The next country I wanted to visit during this World Cup special is Japan. I love Japanese food, but also find it very intimidating to cook. The flavours are subtle yet perfectly balanced with few ingredients. I’m always so worried that I am going to ruin this ancient cuisine, so I tend to stick to my local Japanese restaurant. As I have said before this World Cup special is all about learning other cuisines, so I decided to face my fears and try making Gyoza. Gyoza is a Japanese dumpling, it has a beautiful pork filling (and we all know about my love of all things pork!) and is pan fried to get that yummy umami flavour then quickly braised to finish cooking. I can never get enough of them whenever I order them, and I figured this is probably the least daunting dish of all the Japanese dishes I love.
I was discussing my thoughts with the Chef at my local Japanese joint, and he gave me a few pointers when it comes to recreating this dish as well as an easy to follow recipe that we can all enjoy. I went home full of beans (and nerves) and while everyone was out I tried out this recipe. And to my surprise it was really easy and most importantly very successful! I loved it so much that I rushed out and bought more supplies and made it for dinner that night! If you have always been scared to cook Japanese, yet love to eat it I highly suggest giving this dish a go! I served it with a cheats dipping sauce which I will add to this recipe.
1) In a large bowl combine Pork mince, cabbage, sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, garlic and spring onions,then divide the mixture into two.
2) Next its time to make the Gyoza. Lay half the Gow Gee wrappers on your work bench and divide half the mixture onto the wrappers (about 1 Teaspoon of mince mixture per wrapper). Brush the edges with water and then fold your wrappers in half making a half moon shape, making sure you have pressed the edges down together to seal in the filling. I then like to crimp them using my fingers to give them a more authentic look, however you can use a folk to achieve a similar look.
3) Repeat with the other half of the pork mince mixture and Gow Gee wrappers. Set aside until needed.
4) Now its time to make the dipping sauce. Whisk together teriyaki sauce and sesame oil add the spring onions and set aside in a pretty bowl until needed.
5) In a large frying pan heat half the oil over a high heat. When pan in smoking reduce heat to medium-high and carefully arrange half the Gyoza’s in the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes or until all sides are golden brown. Add 1/2 a cup of hot water, cover with a lid (if you don’t have a fitted lid you can use foil instead) and cook for 4 to 5 minutes (adding a splash of water if needed).
6) Remove pan from the heat and uncover. Let stand for 2 minutes or until the Gyoza comes away from the pan easily. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with the remaining Gyoza’s. Serve Gyoza’s warm and with dipping sauce on the side.
Remember the secret to the perfect dish is to cook with love (and a little va va voom) xx