It’s perhaps unsurprising that dim sum is amongst the most popular styles of Cantonese food. Like chocolate fondants or octopus, however, these tasty dumplings are often difficult to ace at home – generally requiring vast amounts of kitchen skill – and are often best left to the professionals.
First launched in 1996, dim sum stalwarts Royal China (with six restaurants now operating in London) have shared their recipe for steamed chicken and chive dumplings, which are at the simpler end of the spectrum. Though relatively simple to prepare at home, compared to say Siu Long Bao or Har Gau, these chicken and chive dumplings from the chefs at Royal China are huge on flavour. The recipe serves four, but it would be sensible to make at least two or three batches to suit popular demand.
For the filling
Chicken, 300g, ground
Fresh prawns (shrimps), 200g, shelled
Chinese garlic chives, ½ bunch, finely chopped
Garlic, a clove, crushed
Chinese Shao Shing wine, 1 tbsp
Light soy sauce, 1 tbsp
Ginger, ½ tsp, freshly grated
Dried shrimp, ½ tsp, ground
Sugar, a pinch
Sesame oil, 1½ tsp
Cornflour, 1 tsp
Salt, 1 tsp
White pepper, ½ tsp, ground
For the dumplings
Shu-mei wrappers (Wonton Skin), 4
Whip all of the filling ingredients by hand, until they are fully combined and hold together.
Place a dollop of the filling in the centre of each wrapper and bring up the corners to form a little “money bag.” Leave the top open so that you can see some of the filling.
Blanch the whole chives in very hot water tap water. Then tie a chive around the neck of each dumpling so that it looks like it is wearing a little green belt.
Steam the dumplings in an oiled bamboo steamer for 15 minutes, in a steaming wok.
Serve hot with sweet chilli sauce.
Further information on Royal China can be found at royalchinagroup.co.uk.