Jeanette - Off The Cuff

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Blogger at: http://offthecuffhome.blogspot.com and http://offthecuffcooking.blogspot.com -- My name is Jeanette, and I was born in Sweden, but unlike the famous Muppet, I am not a professional Swedish Chef. I actually studied design and photography. I also was a freelance indie-rock critic for several magazines from 1998-2005, and had an in-house PR company for a while. Cooking is in my DNA--my dad's brother was a chef and their father was a pastry chef, my mom's mother was a caterer, who published a cookbook of traditional Finnish breads and pastries when she was 92. Everyone else in my family loves to cook, and we're not afraid to experiment. I have a yen for interior design and remodeling.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Pork & Bok Choy Gyozas


Hi all ten of you loyal readers.  It’s been a while.  Did you miss me? I’m sure you’ve been staying up at night wondering when I’d have a new recipe to share.  Oh, don’t you worry.  This one is SURE to disappoint, as I didn’t even take photos… I was up to my wrists in raw meat, and my husband was exercising and couldn’t help hold the camera.  And it was late, dangit.  We were hungry, so I just cooked, and did not pause to consider the repercussions of a photo-free blog.  But take heart – there are OTHER blogs that show you how to assemble gyozas, and they have expertly taken photos, so if you like my recipe, you can just imagine what the photos would have looked like.  And the best part is that this recipe is approximately $5 worth of ingredients and you’ll have about 40 gyozas when you’re done, and you can freeze uncooked ones for later use.

Are ya ready? Okay!










INGREDIENTS:
1 package of 40 –50 Gyoza wrappers ( Usually in a refrigerated section of your local grocer, although depending on where you live, you might have to find an Asian market—and I think these were about $1.40.)

Filling:
1 lb ground pork (I’m not kidding –it was only $1.04 at my local grocery store!)
1 head of BABY Bok Choy – Cut the butt end of it off, and finely chop it up into slivers, all the way up to the leaves
1 bunch of green onions (approx. 4-6 of them), finely sliced about 1/2 way up the green stem
1-2 cloves garlic
1/4-1/2  tsp crushed red pepper, according to your spice preference
1 tbsp Mirin or Seasoned Rice Vinegar (white wine will also do in a pinch)
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp soy sauce

DIRECTIONS: 

First, spend a few minutes gently separating the gyoza wrappers, and fanning them out on a large tray or cookie sheet just so it’s easy to line them up and fill them before frying the ones you intend to eat immediately.

Mix all the filling ingredients together in a large bowl, mincing well with your hands until evenly distributed.    Scoop a slightly rounded teaspoon of filling into the center of one gyoza wrapper.  Have a little bowl of water handy and dip your finger in it to trace around the perimeter of each wrapper, and then fold the wrapper in half, and pinch the edges shut.  Proceed with the rest of the wrappers until you’ve used them up.  (I had a little pork mixture left, so I made a little patty out of it and fried it up with the gyozas.)

To fry the gyozas, my favorite method is to fry-steam them.  The easiest way to do this is to use a skillet that has a tightly closing lid in the same size.  Drizzle a tablespoon of oil in the skillet (I sometimes use a mix of vegetable oil and sesame oil for a little extra flavor.)   Lay your gyozas fairly close together in the preheated skillet (on medium) and let them brown for a minute or two on the one side.  Don’t flip them over or get too eager to check the bottoms since they’ll otherwise stick and tear if you scoot them around too much.  When they’re browned on one side, pour about 1/3 cup water into the skillet (careful—the oil may splatter) and immediately put the lid over the top to steam them for about 5 minutes or so.  Once most or all the water is absorbed, they should be ready to eat, as long as you did not over fill them.
I serve mine with sticky rice and stir fried veggies (bell peppers, broccoli and water chestnuts would be a good combo, although tonight I had no veggies, and no time so it was just rice) and then I drizzled Mae Ploy sauce on top, because it’s my favorite chili sauce.
Enjoy!

PS.  To freeze, lay left over (uncooked) gyozas on a cookie sheet, and freeze them a few hours, before transferring them to a ziplock baggie, or container.  That keeps them from sticking together in the freezer.

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