Homemade Pot Stickers and Pork Lo Mein

After three months, Parker and I are finally back in Texas!  And one of the things we missed the most was cooking together.  We’ve actually gotten pretty good at it!  We’re both equally obsessed with Asian cuisine, and that can be demonstrated through two things: 1) The Chinese food delivery guy at Betty’s Best (best Chinese food place in Dallas, hands down) knows us a little too well (Parker contemplated making him a friendship bracelet at one point, and I once had a life chat with Mike on my doorstep when I delivered Chinese food late one night because I’m really good at eating my feelings).  Anyways…. Reason 2) We cook Asian food all the time.  So naturally our first meal back in Dallas had to be Asian – and it was one of the best things we’ve made so far, no contest!

A word to the wise.  I’m the OCD one in this relationship.  I measure ingredients and follow recipes to the letter.  Parker on the other hand… Let’s just say when we cook there’s a lot of “You know what this recipe needs?  This!” or “I’m just gonna add a little bit more of this because I can”.  SO, while the recipes below are still delicious, what Parker and I ate might have been a little bit different!  He has yet to mess up a recipe when we cook, so go with your gut when you’re cooking and see how it goes!!  Also, both of these recipes are from the “Stir Fry” Williams-Sonoma Cookbook – a great book, I highly recommend it!

Homemade Pot Stickers: Note this makes 48 pot stickers, serves 6-8 (no, we didn’t eat 48 dumplings, we cut the recipe down haha though we’ve done that before… #notsorry)

Ingredients for Pot Stickers:

  • 1/2 pound medium-sized shrimp, peeled, deveined, and finely chopped (note: we made the dumplings without shrimp, and instead doubled the amount of pork)
  • 1/2 pound ground turkey or pork
  • 2 green (spring) onions finely chopped
  • 1 cup finely chopped Chinese cabbage (….or just cabbage haha that’s what we used!)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped, peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 1 package of pot sticker wrappers (for your own sanity, you can find these at a specialty grocery store often in the frozen section – start de-thawing them immediately before you start cooking!)
  • 4 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chicken stock

Ingredients for Dipping Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped, peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil

Instructions:

  • To make the filling, combine the shrimp, turkey/pork, green onions, cabbage, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and sherry in a bowl and mix well
  • For each pot sticker, transfer a wrapper to a flat surface (put some flour down on your cutting board, it will help!)
  • Put 1 rounded teaspoon filling in the center
  • Fold the wrapper in half and press together firmly to form a fully sealed edge (if you want, you can buy the dumpling shmusher – it’s a technical term, obviously – which is what Parker and I used and it saves your life!  Check out the Tips and Tricks section to find out how to buy one!)
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan.  Once hot, arrange 12 dumplings in the pan and fry for five minutes.  Add chicken stock as needed to make sure they don’t burn (this part is trial and error… Parker and I have had our fair share of crunchy dumplings in the past because we’ve burned them so badly…)
  • Cut a pot sticker in half to make sure they’re cooked all the way through.  I recognize these aren’t the best instructions… but the recipe makes 48 so just keep trying!  That’s honestly how Parker and I learned how to make them, but we eventually got the hang of it!
  • To make the dipping sauce, simply combine all the ingredients in a bowl and stir well

Pork Lo Mein: Serves 2 as a main dish, 4 as a side dish

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 fresh Chinese mein noodles
  • 3 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • Pepper
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
  • 1/4 pound of pork tenderloin, cut into strips 2 inches long and half an inch wide
  • 6-8 fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps cut into strips
  • 1 small bok choy (….didn’t use this, neither of us like bok choy, but you go for it!)
  • 4 green (spring) onions, finely chopped

Instructions:

  • Fill a large pot three-fourths full of water and bring to a boil
  • Add noodles and boil until tender 3-4 minutes (we found that the noodles were a little undercooked, so maybe try it a little bit more than that)
  • To make the sauce, combine the sherry, soy sauce, sugar, and pepper to taste in a small bowl.  Set aside
  • In a frying pan, warm 2 tablespoons of oil, swirl to cover the entire pan
  • Add pork and stir and toss for 2-3 minutes.  Add the mushrooms and green onions and stir to toss every 15-20 seconds for 2-3 minutes
  • Cover and cook until vegetables just begin to wilt, about 1 minute
  • Remove cover and add noodles to pan, along with the sauce
  • Use tongs to toss until well mixed and heated through (about 3 minutes – add water if you feel that the noodles are undercooked.  Parker and I just kept tasting it until we were confident that the dish was ready!  Like I said… He’s more “Sears Approximation Method” to cooking haha)

Everything turned out absolutely delicious!  I think we finely mastered dumplings (the trick is adding the chicken stock, who knew!) and this lo mein recipe will be repeated in the not so distant future without question.  Just goes to show that you don’t need to do something big and fancy to enjoy spending time together – turns out cooking together and watching Big Bang Theory is more than enough!  Happy eating, y’all!

2 thoughts on “Homemade Pot Stickers and Pork Lo Mein

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