Introduction: Discovering the Art of Chinese Dumplings
Chinese dumplings, also known as Jiaozi, are a staple in Chinese cuisine and are enjoyed all around the world. These delicious little pockets of dough filled with savory meats, vegetables and herbs are a delight to eat, and learning to make them can be an art in itself. In this guide, we will explore the history of Chinese dumplings, the ingredients used to make them, the techniques involved in their creation, and the various types of dumplings and dipping sauces that are commonly used. We will also recommend some popular Chinese dumpling restaurants around the world.
A Brief History of Chinese Dumplings
Chinese dumplings have a long and rich history, dating back more than 1,800 years. It is said that Zhang Zhongjing, a famous Chinese physician, invented the dumpling during the Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) as a way to keep the poor people of his village from freezing to death during winter. He wrapped mutton, chili and various herbs in thin dough, boiled them and gave them to the villagers, who were suffering from frostbite. The dumplings helped to warm them up and filled their stomachs. Since then, dumplings have become a popular dish in Chinese cuisine, and have evolved to include a wide variety of fillings and flavors.
Ingredients Used in Chinese Dumplings
The ingredients used in Chinese dumplings vary depending on the filling, but the basic ingredients include flour, water and salt. The flour used to make the dough is usually wheat flour or rice flour. The filling can be made from a variety of ingredients, including ground pork, beef, chicken or shrimp, combined with vegetables such as cabbage, carrots, garlic or chives. Herbs and spices such as ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil and white pepper are also commonly used to add flavor. Dumpling wrappers can also be made with different types of flour, such as glutinous rice flour, cornstarch or potato starch, for a different texture.