The three things I enjoy most when I am stressed out are cooking, baking and cleaning. That being said, this past weekend I decided to make some mandu or Korean dumplings.
The recipe I used was inspired from Maangchi.com.
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Filling Time: Varies, approximately 45 minutes
Total Cooking Time including (steaming and/or frying the whole batch): 60 minutes
For this recipe you will need the following ingredients:
Mandu (Filling and Assembly):
1/2 pound of ground pork;
1 1/2 pound of lean ground beef;
7-8 shiitake mushrooms (soaked); If you would like to make the vegetarian version, leave out the meat and add mung bean sprouts instead
2 cups of Asian chives/buchu;
1/2 of a medium onion;
1 cup of sweet potato glass noodles (cooked);
1 package of medium firm tofu;
5 cloves of minced garlic;
1 1/2 tsp salt;
1/2 tsp ground black pepper;
1/4 tsp sugar;
1 egg white; and
Mandu skins/wrappers (2 packages of 60)
*Optional: You can also add 2 cups of finely chopped kimchi
For the Dipping Sauce:
Red chili powder (Korean style)
*Ensure that you have soaked the shiitake mushrooms for a few hours, so that they are nice and soft
Step 1: Place your pork and beef into a large mixing bowl. Season it with 1 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of black pepper. Add 1 tbsp of sesame oil and combine and mix all the ingredients together, using your hand.
Step 2: Thoroughly wash and dry the Asian chives. Dry them and chop them into small pieces so you have about two cups and place into a separate bowl. Add 1/2 tbsp of sesame oil and mix. Add it to the large mixing bowl.
Step 3: Squeeze out the excess water from the 7-8 shiitake mushrooms. Finely chop the mushrooms along with a 1/2 of a medium sized onion. Place into a separate bowl and add 1 tsp of soy sauce, 1/2 tsp of sugar and 1 1/2 tsp of sesame oil and mix together. Add it to the large mixing bowl.
Step 4: Boil 2 cups of water and add a handful of sweet potato glass noodles, cook for 6-7 minutes or until soft.
Step 5: Remove the tofu from the package and squeeze out the excess water using either a cloth or paper towel. Mash the tofu with a masher or a fork and add 1 tsp of sesame oil and a pinch of salt. Add it to the large mixing bowl.
Step 6: Remove your glass noodles and strain them. Put the noodles into a separate bowl and add 1 tsp of sesame oil, and add it to the large mixing bowl.
Step 7: Add 5 cloves of minced garlic and add it to the large mixing bowl.
Step 8: Mix all the ingredients in the large mixing bowl by hand until all ingredients are combined.
Optional: *To ensure that you are satisfied with your filling, fry or steam a small amount of the mixture and check it for tastiness. Adjust accordingly.
Filling the Mandu:
Step 1: Beat one egg white into a bowl.
Step 2: Take your mandu skins/wrappers and dip one edge into the egg bowl.
Step 3: Take a spoonful of mandu filling and place it in the middle of the mandu skin/wrapper.
Step 4: Fold the side of the skin/wrapper to close the mandu and ensure that there are no gaps.
Step 5: Boil a large pot of water and steam your mandu on a cheese cloth.
Step 6: After the mandu has steamed for about 6-7 minutes on high heat with the lid on, remove from heat and let cool.
Step 7: The mandu can be stored and frozen for later use or you can fry them in a pan with a little vegetable oil.
Dipping Sauce for the Mandu:
Step 1: Take equal parts soy sauce and vinegar and mix.
Step 2: Add sesame oil and sesame seeds, then garnish with green onion.
Step 3: Serve with mandu and enjoy.