My new mini two-layer bamboo steamer. Isn't it adorable?
Hmm, let's see: we have pork shoulder steak, ground ginger in a jar (my regular grocery store regretfully didn't feel the need to have fresh ginger root available for my use), salt, pepper, roasted sesame oil, reduced-salt soy sauce, an egg, water chestnuts, 1/4 of a red bell pepper, 3 scallions, a clove of garlic and a few flat leaf parsley leaves.
Of course, I could not follow a recipe. What did you expect from me?
I carefully minced the vegetable components for the filling and then set to work on the pork shoulder. Let me tell you, pork shoulder has a lot of connective tissue. And it takes a great deal of patience to trim all that off, leaving nice pieces of pork meat amid a pile of silver skin and fat. The pork meat was then cubed and then minced in my mini food processor. Meanwhile, the remaining ingredients had been dumped into a mixing bowl. Then the meat was added and thoroughly mixed by hand.
After much hand washing, with warm water and copious amounts of soap, I retrieved my package of wonton wrappers and readied a small bowl of water for assembly. Despite what I had heard from a notable Food Network cooking personality, I had absolutely no problems in separating the wrappers from one another. I wet the edges and added a dollop of filling to the dumpling before sealing it closed. I first tried to seal the packages like a purse and then I resorted to first bringing two oposite corners together and then the other two, so that you end up with a square parcel.
The finished product. And can I tell you? It was delicious. I even got the thumbs up from my daughter. Here you can see the two different methods of wrapping that I attempted.
I brought out my old 8 inch omelet pan for this project and as the bamboo steamers were smaller, I formed two lengths of aluminum foil into a circle that is about one inch thick so that the steamer sits above the water. I cut two circles of parchment paper that were slightly smaller than the interior of the baskets and placed water in the pan. It is important to add more water as the steam evaporates, but remember that each time water is added, the cooking process will slow.
My cheap way of adapting what I have to what I need. Hey, it works.
It's working well.
And since I had a few extra wonton wrappers, I heated up some canola oil in my now clean and dry pan before cutting each wonton into 4 strips and frying briefly then draining. Yum.