Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Pot Stickers!

With a freezer full of meat, I sometimes get really sick of making the same old thing, the same old way. 

I'm bored with the stuff that I have been eating and I want to try something different.  I want to give my hubby something different.  BUT, I have to make do with what I have in the house.  I am NOT going to the store for anything.

 I love Pot Stickers.  When I lived in Connecticut I always had some in the freezer.  There was a specialty store nearby that carried them.  Here in Northern Maine we have no such store but... They do carry Wonton Wrappers in the grocery store so a while back I picked up a package and just have never gotten around to using them.

My favorite Pot Stickers are the pork ones so I spent the morning browsing a bunch of recipes to see the basics of what they usually contain. 

I have pretty much everything,

So lets go,  lets see what we can come up with.

Below is the basic recipe I followed but I didn't have exactly everything so I improvised a bit.


1/4 small head Napa cabbage, finely chopped (about 2 cups; 7 ounces)
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus 1/8 teaspoon for seasoning
1/3 pound ground pork (not too lean)
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced (from 1/2-inch knob)
1 small carrot, coarsely shredded (about 2 tablespoons)
2 scallions, thinly sliced (about 1/4 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons Asian (toasted) sesame oil
1/2 egg, lightly beaten
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
30 gyoza (pot sticker) wrappers, from 1 (14-ounce) package***
1/4 cup canola oil

***I used Wonton Wrappers and they worked fine.

All of the recipes called for Napa Cabbage. I don't have any of that but I do have regular cabbage.
So with the regular Cabbage I chopped it up fine and sprinkled it with the kosher salt and let it sit for a bit. 
 then I put it inside of a clean dish towel and wrung out as much water as I could.
and put it in a bowl.

Ground pork.... hmmm.. I don't have any of that either but I do have pork chops.

I took two pork chops out of the freezer

 and while it was still almost completely frozen I sliced it thin and then chopped it up fine.
Its pretty easy while its still frozen.  It would have been next to impossible if I had waited until it was thawed. 

 And No,
 I don't have a meat grinder or a food processor.  I would love both of those things but really, this worked fine and was close enough to ground pork for me.

I guess that is one of my points in writing this blog.

You don't really need all of the expensive or fancy gadgets and equipment. No matter what you have or what your cooking experience is, you can make all kinds of stuff.
Love, imagination and determination go a long way.

(I would however, not be happy if your took my knives or my Kitchen Aid Mixer!)

I grated the Carrot
Chopped the Scallion
Copped the Garlic
Chopped the Ginger
I put these ingredients into a bowl
with the Pork and Cabbage
Soy Sauce and
Sesame oil

In a separate dish I beat the egg and added 1/2 to ingredients in the bowl.

I mixed it up and started to fill.
I had a dry counter, a coffee cup with a little bit of water in it and a pastry brush. 
Keep your package of wrappers covered while you are working so they don't dry out.
 There are fancy ways to fold the wrappers and you can see by the pictures that I did them that way for a bit but it took so much longer that...
 I just folded them into a triangle. 
 Easier to make and easier to cook.
I did only a few at a time because the wrappers dry out so fast.

Place about 1 1/2 tsp. of filling into the center of the wrapper.
Brush the edges of the wrapper with wet pastry brush.
Fold as desired and press edges until you feel them stick.
As I worked, I placed the completed Pot Sticker onto a DRY cookie sheet not touching each other.  When the sheet was full I placed them into the freezer.
They are fragile and stick if at all wet so I found them much easier all around to deal with when they were frozen individually.
I have to say, Pot stickers are not something you want to make from scratch if you are in a hurry.
If you have the time they are WELL worth the effort.
I filled and froze in batches.  They don't take long to freeze.  Once they were frozen I removed them from the cookie sheet and placed them in a storage container. 
When all was said and done I had 45 Pot Stickers.  Plenty for the nights meal and plenty to keep in the freezer for another time.
To cook them I placed some oil in a pan and browned them on both sides taking care the entire time to be gentle because they are fragile. Once they were browned the way I wanted them I placed about 1/4 cup of water in the pan and covered them. Let them cook for about 5 minutes and removed the lid.  Let the rest of the water evaporate.

Remove from pan and serve with dipping sauce.
Remember... They are called Pot Stickers for a reason.  Be careful or they will fall apart.
I served them with two choices for dipping sauce.
My favorite Peanut Sauce from the store...
and a dipping sauce recipe I got from a friend

Robb's dipping sauce:
1/4 c. soy sauce
 approx. 1/8 c. rice wine vinegar
minced garlic - to taste, 1/2 tsp.
minced ginger - to taste,1/2 tsp.
 1 tsp.. brown sugar1/2 tsp. sesame oil
toasted sesame seeds.
- whisk all together in bowl and adjust seasoning to suit your liking.
Between the two,  I have to say I preferred Robb's sauce.
But, both were YUM!!
If you want to serve them as a meal a stir fry rice is nice!

Enjoy!  We did!




  1. OMG !! I am so hung on having this taste today. Am going to share the recipe with friends and coworkers in hopes someone will make them with me. How great !!

  2. WOW!!! Those look GREAT!!! I'm going to have to try those. We have LOTS of pork right now to eat: low on beef til we get a cow butchered. These are going to have to happen here!! :)