Steamed Shrimp Cocktail Dumplings

If I see shumai on the menu, I’m getting them. They remind me of our dinners out at our local Chinese spot, Jade Billows, where I ate as a kid. There’s something about that chewy, pillow-y texture of the wontons that’s super craveable and familiar.

I make a lot of shrimp cocktail. It has slowly evolved from what should be a special occasion appetizer, to something I make at least twice a week. I can make cocktail sauce with a blindfold on. We’ve upgraded our monthly ketchup supply to a 64 ounce bottle, and we probably eat more horseradish in a month than the average American eats in two years.

So combining these two shrimp-loving appetizers was a no-brainer. This is another serious Frankenstein recipe for the books. The cocktail sauce – you guessed it – is an Asian-flavored version of the cocktail sauce we all know and love.

This was my first times folding, and steaming, dumplings – so I enrolled the help of a Google search to find ways to steam the dumplings without the traditional bamboo steamer. Some genius thought up the idea of balling up aluminum foil and setting the plate a few inches above simmering water. It worked like a charm. Not only does it save me from attempting to create room for a cooking tool I literally do not have room for, it’s idiot-proof.

The best part? Now you can make steamed dumplings whenever you want. You can substitute equal portions ground pork in the recipe below, or minced sautéed mushrooms, water chestnuts and carrots to make veggie dumplings.

I think sheer volume is the biggest plus to making your own dumplings. When I order Chinese takeout, there’s never enough dumplings. What person is satiated with six shumai? They’re like oysters, I just can’t eat enough.

So go to town on these – make fifty of them if you’d like. Any leftovers will get eaten, just like your Chinese takeout always does. Trust me. 😊

I N G R E D I E N T S

Serves 2.

  • 1 1 / 2 lb. shrimp, peeled, deveined & minced
  • 1 package refrigerated wonton wrappers
  • 3 scallion stalks, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon hot sesame oil, plus extra for steaming
  • 1 teaspoon hot chili oil
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of pepper
  • 1 / 4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 egg, whisked

D I R E C T I O N S

  1. Make the cocktail sauce. Combine the ketchup, horseradish, lemon juice, 1 teaspoon sambal oelek and 1 teaspoon soy sauce. Mix until combined. Set aside.
  2. Combine the shrimp, scallions, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, mirin, fish sauce, 1 teaspoon hot sesame oil, chili oil, 1 tablespoon sambal oelek, salt and pepper. Mix until incorporated.
  3. To make the dumplings, take 1 wonton wrapper, coat the edges with your finger with egg, put 1 tablespoon of the filling in a corner of the wonton, and slowly crimp the edges until the dumpling is in a half-moon shape. Replicate for the others until no more filling remains.
  4. Fill a pot large enough to fit a small dinner plate with 2 to 3 inches of water. Take 2 3-foot pieces of aluminum foil and ball them until they are about 6 inches in diameter. Flatten the tops slightly, and place in the pot, flattened side up. Place the dinner plate so it sits on top of the balls of foil.
  5. Coat the plate lightly with hot sesame oil, and place dumplings on the plate, giving each about 1 to 2 inches of space on either side so they have room to steam.
  6. Once the water is simmering, cover the pot with a lid, and steam each batch of dumplings for 7 to 8 minutes. Remove the dumplings once cooked through, and continue until all batches are done.
  7. Plate the dumplings, serving hot or warm, along with the cocktail sauce.

3 thoughts on “Steamed Shrimp Cocktail Dumplings

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