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Today is an auspicious day- it is the beginning of the Chinese New Year (the Year of the Dragon) and this is our 100th post!! It is hard for me to believe how much this blog has changed my thinking about food. Before this blog, I never would have thought to make Chocolate Covered Caramels, tried Chicken Biryani, or given any thought to specialty diets such as gluten-free or vegetarian. I have been pushed to  improve my skills for two reasons- 1) I am surrounded by other stunningly fantastic bloggers and 2) I want excitement in the blog. None of this ho-hum Manwich every night stuff.

With this blog, I wanted to tell the world just how easy it is to cook. It just takes practice. Obviously no one starts out in the beginning making crepes and the like. You have to start somewhere easy. I hope I have provided a combination of recipes that meat every taste preference and skill level. Most of all, I hope I have inspired others to share in the joy of cooking.

In honor of the Chinese New Year… and with special thanks to Sweet Ipomoea, whose recipe inspired me and taught me how to fold them properly.

Pork Potstickers

  • 1 package of potsticker wrappers
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 bundle spinach (I used 1/2 a box of frozen chopped spinach)
  • 1 small-sized carrot, julienned
  • 2 springs green onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, finely minced
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 egg
  • salt & white pepper

Filling:

Combine your carrots, onion, garlic, and ginger with the pork in a bowl. Squeeze as much water as possible out of the spinach and add it to the pork. Add  cornstarch, salt, pepper, and egg to the bowl. Mix everything together.

Wrapping Potstickers:

Fill a small bowl with some water. This will act as “glue” to seal your wrapper. Spoon 1 tablespoon of filling onto the center of the wrapper. Use your finger to brush water all around the edges of the wrapper. Bring opposite sides together at one point and pinch in the middle. Pleating only the upper half of the dumpling, make about three pleats on one side going in the direction toward the center. Then repeat with the opposite side, so that the pleats on each sides are pointing towards the middle. You’ll get a nice crescent shape and a flat bottom.  If this is too complicated, you can just sealed the edges tightly. Place your dumplings on a floured surface.

Cooking potstickers:

On a non-stick pan, arrange potstickers flat-side down and fill with water just covering the bottom of potstickers. Add 1 tablespoon of oil, turn on high heat and cover with lid. When the water starts to simmer, turn to low heat to steam potstickers. Let the water evaporate and fried til golden brown. Serve with soy sauce.

Before:

After:

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