Potstickers

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whole wheat potstickers
A tasty appetizer!

Today’s post shows exactly why we head  over to the public library several times a week. We look up books on-line, reserve them, then stop and pick them up when they’re available. Because it’s so easy to get the books, we select books that we might never even have looked at or considered if we were planning to buy books. And, by doing so, we’ve often been pleasantly surprised, and found recipes and ideas that we would never have known of otherwise.

Since it was on the new books list, we reserved The Baker Creek Vegan Cookbook, by Jere and Emilee Gettle. Now, we had no idea what Baker Creek was, but we figured it might be some sort of restaurant that became popular enough to warrant a cookbook. It isn’t. Instead, it’s an heirloom seed company, go figure. So, what are they doing publishing a cookbook? Well, they also have a restaurant, so there is some connection to cooking.

As you’ve probably guessed, this recipe comes from them (well, at least the potsticker dough and cooking instructions), so let’s scratch out some potstickers. Ready?

Potstickers

Yield: 12 potstickers

Potstickers

Ingredients

    For the dough
  • 1/2 cup (70 g) flour
  • Pinch salt
  • 1/4 cup (60 g) boiling water
  • For the filling
  • 1-2 Tbs oil
  • ~2 cups chopped vegetables, such as carrot, pac choi, onion, mushrooms, asparagus, celery
  • 1 Tbs soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp harissa or other spicy condiment
  • For cooking
  • 1 Tbs oil

Abbreviated Instructions

For the dough

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, salt, and boiling water until a dough forms. Knead for 4-5 minutes. Wrap in plastic and set aside while you make the filling.

For the filling

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add vegetables, soy sauce, and harissa, and cook, stirring often, until everything is tender and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool.

For cooking

Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces. On a floured surface, roll each piece into a circle about 3 inches in diameter. Place a tablespoon of vegetable mix in the center and fold up and seal the dough around it. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Arrange potstickers in pan, but do not move them. Let fry for 2 minutes.

Add 1/4 to 1/3 cup of water and immediately cover skillet. Reduce heat to medium and steam for 7 to 8 minutes or until water is evaporated.

http://scratchinit.halversen.com/2015/04/potstickers/

Ingredient discussion:

Note that the recipe calls for flour; we used white whole wheat, but we think any wheat flour will work, so use what you have on hand. For the filling, we used a mix of vegetables that we had in the fridge, along with some available condiments. Feel free to substitute whatever you have on hand, or even use leftovers. It’s not as if these are authentic potstickers (but, as you’ll taste, they are good), so why not mix it up?

Procedure in detail:

making potsticker dough
Just mix together the flour, salt and water for the dough.

Make dough. In a medium heat-proof bowl, combine flour, salt, and boiling water, and quickly stir into a soft dough. The boiling water helps to develop gluten in the flour so the dough will be stretchier and more pliable. Be careful, since the water is boiling hot.

making potsticker dough
In less than a minute the dough will come together, then  you can start kneading.

Knead dough. Once the dough is cool enough to handle, take it out and start kneading. You can do this on a work surface, or you can do as we do with such small amounts of dough, and just knead it between your hands by pressing it out into a disk, folding it over, and repeating. Knead the dough until it’s smooth, about 4 minutes.

potsticker dough resting
It really helps to let dough rest; it will be a lot easier to roll and less susceptible to springing back.

Rest dough. Wrap the dough in plastic and set it on the counter to rest while you make the filling.

making potsticker filling
You can put just about anything in potstickers; you just want to end up with about a cup of filling.

Make filling. Heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add vegetables, soy sauce, and harissa, and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are tender and most the liquid released from the vegetables has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool.

making potickers
Roll the pieces of dough into small circles, place a tablespoon of filling in the center, and wrap and seal.
round potsticker
We don’t know if there’s a right or a wrong way of sealing potstickers, so we just improvised.
potstickers
We made a couple of different shapes of potstickers; they tasted the same.

Shape potstickers. Divide the dough into 12 approximately equal pieces. Dredge each piece in flour, then roll into a disk about 3 inches in diameter. Place a tablespoon of filling in the center and fold the dough over and seal. You can make half-moon shapes, or a ball, or another shape of your choosing. We did both the ball and half-moon. As you make each potsticker, set it aside.

frying potstickers
The potstickers should sizzle when they hit the pan. Do not move them, you want the bottom to crisp and brown.

Fry. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, arrange potstickers in the skillet, but, once placed, don’t move them. Let them fry and sizzle for about 2 minutes.

adding water
The most dangerous part, adding water to the hot pan. You’ll get a cloud of steam which will burn, so careful is the watchword.

Steam. Okay, be careful with this step. Add 1/4 to 1/3 cup of water to the skillet — it’ll spatter like crazy — and quickly cover with a tightly-fitting lid. Reduce heat to medium and let steam until the water is evaporated, about 7 to 8 minutes.

Serve. Since we don’t know how authentic these are, we suggest that you serve them with whatever you feel is appropriate for your filling.

Years ago we used to make potstickers occasionally, using wrappers that came in packages from the store. Then we just stopped. We don’t know why, since we like potstickers, but we did. Perhaps because we don’t buy much produce at the store, so we don’t see the wrappers in the refrigerated case, but now that we know just how easy it is to make up something that’ll pass for the wrapper (we think authentic wrappers might be made from rice flour), we just might start making them again. Since making the  dough is so easy, and you can fill them with anything, we say five stars.

Worth the trouble?

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