consumed on 12/3/05

My uncle goes through phases of cooking where he focuses on one thing until he has it perfected. So when he called asking if I wanted to come over for gyoza… that wasn’t a hard one to answer.

There was no cheating; all the gyoza were sealed by hand and the pleats were perfectly uniform (and he’d gotten to the point where he was FAST at closing them up).

They had a pork and shrimp filling with garlic, cornstarch and a touch of wine. He told me about a place in Japan that puts a little lard in each packet so that it fries from the inside as well, which sounds brilliant. Like soup dumplings, but even better.

The revelation came during cooking time. I’ve always fried my gyoza on both sides, but the trick is to pan fry them on just one side, turn the heat up to high, add water, turn back down and steam, covered for a few minutes, then uncover and let the remaining water evaporate. This cooking method really affected the overall texture and the gyoza had a great balance of crisp and soft.