Tag: Steamed

Dim Sum: Ginger Beef Dumplings

PI Ginger Beef Dumpling

I had these particular dumplings at the Palais Imperial in Ottawa a while ago. They weren’t spectacular exactly, but they do get a mention for being a bit unexpected.

The full name from the Chinese characters on the menu (see the inset in the above picture), read Ginger Scallion Beef Dumplings, which amplifies the English name by also specifying the scallion that is included, not as part of the filling, but as a steaming ‘companion’ along with the thick shreds of ginger. What is a bit odd is that the final character in the name is (jiǎo) which typically refers to a dumpling with a flour wrapper. Here, a bean curd skin, also known as ‘tofu skin’ is used to enclose the filling. This product, which is purchased in dried sheets and then reconstituted, is often used to make steamed rolls in dim sum houses, but only occasionally to make dumplings in this shape.

Anyway, the filling here was decent if unremarkable (lightly seasoned and well textured), but the choice of wrapper really made for a different experience. Tofu skins, when steamed, don’t have the same al dente resistance as wheat doughs and it has almost a ‘papery’ mouthfeel when you first bit in to it. That may not sound especially appetizing, but, in fact, it is quite a nice texture and makes a pleasant change in a series of dumpling courses. I enjoyed these…

Dim Sum: Steamed Squid 蒸魷魚

Yangtze Steamed Squid

Steamed squid is a regular offering in dim sum restaurants and is a dish I rarely pass up. Sometimes, you find squid steamed with a curry sauce but, in my experience, the curry sauce usually served is a bit insipid and I generally don’t care for it.

The offering you see pictured above is one I was recently served at the Yangtze Dining Lounge in Ottawa. Most of the dishes I had that day were not actually that great but this particular one was first class. Commonly, squid pieces are often dusted in a flour of some sort before steaming but these were steamed ‘clean’ and the effect was very well done.

The pieces of ‘tube’ were very plump and thick and I would have guessed that they came from a fairly large specimen but the tentacles that were also steamed alongside were obviously from very tiny squid. I am not sure if the body flesh came from a different animal than the tentacles, or whether the flesh ‘plumped’ up during the steaming process. In any event, the cooking was expertly executed and the result especially tender. As usual, ginger, and a little scallion were added, and both of these were added deftly so as to just give a hint of their presence in the background. I have had this dish many times, both at home and in restaurants, and this was one of the best.

Dim Sum: Steamed Sparerib in Black Bean Sauce

Steamed Rib with Black Beans 2017-07 1

Steamed pork Ribs, especially with Black Beans, is something I cook regularly at home but it is also a regular on dim sum menus everywhere. I most commonly prepare this as an entrée sized dish but a small plate of two or three makes a lovely snack at any time…

Generally, small sections of pork rib are dusted in flour after being lightly seasoned and then steamed with Chinese Salted Black Beans along with soy sauce, or rice wine, so that a nice light sauce is produced. Chilli can be included, as well as sugar, and the flour thickens things very nicely.

What was different about the ones I ate in in Vancouver’s New Town Restaurant recently (and pictured above) was the addition of a slice of Chinese Preserved Sausage. This added a unique umami depth and obviated the need for any additional sugar or other sweetener. I have not come across this before but I will be incorporating it in my own preparations in the future for sure…

Black Bean Steamed Clams

Black Bean Steamed Clams 1

I don’t recall actually ever seeing steamed clams as a dim sum offering in a restaurant, but this combination of clams and salted black beans, along with other typically Chinese seasonings certainly does make a nice ‘small plate’ delicacy and that’s what I had in mind when I put together today’s recipe. I am using the Mirabel brand of small frozen clams as these are deliciously sweet and look very pretty for this sort of dish, but you can use fresh ones of any type…  Continue reading “Black Bean Steamed Clams”

Steamed Chicken with Mushrooms

Steamed Chicken with Mushrooms 1

Today I am showcasing a simple, light meal I put together one evening. It could easily be made with any chicken parts (chopped into small pieces) but I used the wing drumettes on this occasion.

Basically, I just seasoned the drumettes with salt, pepper, and a little sugar and then tossed them with flour to coat. I then placed them on a bed of finely slivered celery and drizzled over some chili oil. On top, I scattered a little more celery, including the leaves, as well as some finely sliced Black Chinese Mushrooms. Finally, I spooned over about a quarter-cup of a sauce made from a little soy sauce and oyster sauce diluted with rice wine and then steamed everything for about 30 minutes.

The Verdict? This was really excellent…. The Chicken was so tender and the flavoring was understated but just right. My wife especially enjoyed it. I think this would make a great dish as one of several in a Chinese meal but, in future I might also divide everything into smaller portions and steam them as Dim Sum type dishes. Give this a try!

Steamed Pork Patty with Dried Squid

Steamed Pork with Dried Squid 1

When I was a law student, I shared an apartment with two other students, one of whom had recently moved to Canada from Hong Kong. Like many Chinese immigrants, he adopted a Western name for himself but his choice, which was Gordon, was rather a poor one as he couldn’t pronounce it. Accordingly, my other room-mate and I re-dubbed him ‘G’…

G. was not a particularly accomplished cook but he had learned a few basic dishes from his mother and, one of these, which he cooked on a regular basis, is the one I am preparing for you today. This preparation represents my earliest introduction to dried squid as a culinary ingredient and I have loved it ever since…  Continue reading “Steamed Pork Patty with Dried Squid”

Steamed Mussels

Steamed Mussels 01

There really is nothing like fresh Mussels. Sadly, we can usually only by them frozen in these parts so when our local stores do have a supply of the fresh article on hand, my signature Steamed Mussels always follows.

I never follow a precise recipe when I steam mussels… each version is just slightly different than the one before… but, essentially, I steam them whole in butter, garlic, onion, white wine and parsley.  I also occasionally add lemon zest, or even chopped tomato to the blend. Basically, my dish is pretty much a version of the famous ‘Moules Mariniere ’, and goes great with crusty bread to sop up the delicious broth that is created by the steaming process… Continue reading “Steamed Mussels”

Spicy Crackling Pork Appetizer

Steamed Pork Appetizer 1

Today’s post is not really a recipe, as such. Rather, I just thought I’d show you a little experiment I conducted with some of the leftover Roast Pork with Crackling I featured recently. Rather than scarf down all the crackling in one sitting, my wife and I exercised considerable restraint and I managed to save a strip along with about two inches or so of the fat and meat underneath. I had in mind a little appetizer idea and wanted to see how it would turn out.

Basically, I made a sauce by pureeing a tomato and some red bell pepper along with Sichuan Chili Bean Paste, sugar, and vinegar. After reducing and cooling the sauce, I marinated the chunk of pork in the sauce for about an hour and then I made a bed of celery sticks (which were first quickly flash-fried) and placed the pork on top. I steamed it, with the sauce poured over, for about ten minutes and served it right away.

Basically, this method is sort of a cockeyed reversal of the Chinese dish Hui Guo Rou (回鍋肉), also known as ‘twice-cooked pork’, in which a chunk of pork with the rind attached is moist-cooked by simmering, and then fried, with sauce later added, so that the pork becomes crisp. Here, I started with crisp pork and then moist-cooked it with steam.

Anyway, I was curious to see if the very crunchy crackling on top of the meat would remain crispy after steaming. As it turned out, it doesn’t but the new texture that resulted is almost as delectable. The meat was nicely tender, while the fat gave a lovely, unctuous contrast to the slight chewiness of the skin. The sauce also worked even better than I hoped (it is something I am working on for another dish) and, in all, I have to declare this little experiment a success…

 

Steamed Ginger Lamb Dumplings

Ginger Lamb Dumplings 1

I have a done a couple of lamb dumpling posts since I began my blog, notably Boiled Lamb Dumplings and Xian Market Dumplings with Lamb. Since I was planning to make steamed dumplings using some cooked lamb I had leftover in the fridge, I thought I would share the recipe with you as it illustrates not only a different filling mixture from my previous posts, but also another cooking and folding method for the dough… Continue reading “Steamed Ginger Lamb Dumplings”