I grew up in Yokohama, Japan where one of the main tourist attractions is the biggest Chinatown in Japan. In fact, one of the local specialties in Yokohama that tourists buy as a souvenir is Shumai.
Shumai in Japan has mostly pork as the main ingredient compared to the Chinese Shaomai or Siumai which uses both ground pork and chopped shrimp. Even though Shumai might look difficult or tedious to make, it’s actually not so bad. It could be fun to make these with your children or friends and eat right away after they are steamed.
When I make spring rolls or shumai at home, I always make cheese wrap with the leftover skins. Both pan fried and deep fried cheese wraps are really easy to make and your leftover skins won’t go to waste!
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- 1 lb ground pork
- ½ onion
- 1 inch ginger (about ½ - 1 Tbsp.)
- 3 green onions
- 2 shiitake mushrooms
- Wonton wrappers
- Green peas
- 2 Tbsp. sake
- ½ Tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 tsp. soy sauce
- ½ tsp. salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Soy Sauce
- Rice Vinegar
- La Yu (Japanese chili oil - optional)
- Mince onion, shiitake mushrooms, green onions and grate ginger (keep the juice).
- In a large bowl, combine the meat, Seasonings, and ginger with juice, and mix.
- Add onion, shiitake mushroom, and green onions and mix well with hands until the mixture becomes sticky.
- Form one of your hand as if you are holding a tube. Put a sheet of wonton wrapper on top. Scoop 1 tsp of the mixture on top of the wonton and push it in. Fix the shape with hands and push in a green pea on top.
- Place the ones you finish on top of parchment paper (baking sheet or cabbage leaves) inside the steamer.
- When it’s almost done wrapping, boil water in the wok. Make sure the water will not touch the bamboo steamer.
- When you are done wrapping and water is boiling, put the steamer in the wok. Make sure you wrap the steamer lid with a thin towel (I used Japanese 'tenugui') so that condensation from the water vapor will not drop on Shumai. Cook for 8 minutes.
- If you have some leftover wrappers, you can make Wonton Cheese Wrap or make my fellow blogger friend MJ's Wonton Crackers. For Wonton Cheese Wrap, you put the cheese in the wrapper and use water to seal the two edges tightly and fry in the pan.
- While Shumai is hot, serve with Dipping Sauce (soy sauce + rice vinegar).