Friday, October 10, 2008

Har Gow Recipe (Steamed Prawn Dumplings)

Steamed Prawn (Shrimp) Dumpling
I bought a packet of Soon Kuay (or Soon Kueh) flour (500g for S$1.95, Sunflower brand) a week ago because I wanted to try my hand at making this snack. Instead I ended up using it to make steamed prawn dumplings (har gow). Well, it isn’t exactly ‘restaurant-standard’ har gow with that transparent glassy look, but it tasted GREAT! The skin was springy and delicious.

Soon Kuay flour
Here’s what the Soon Kuay made is made up of: Rice flour, Tapioca flour, Wheat flour, Corn flour and sugar.

Raw grey prawns
Makes 16 har gow (steamed prawn dumplings)
This recipe may be doubled.
250ml water
130g Soon Kuay flour
2 tsp cooking oil
400g raw grey prawns
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp sugar
2 dashes white pepper
¼ tsp sesame oil
1 tsp light soya sauce
2 tsp ginger juice
1 tbsp tomato ketchup (optional)
Method:(How to obtain ginger juice: Peel and wash about a thumb-sized old ginger. Grate till fine, then squeeze the juice out with your hands.)
1. Filling: Shell the prawns and de-vein them (remove the thin black vein running along the length of the prawn). Rinse well and pat dry. Cut each prawn into threes. Add the rest of the filling ingredients. Mix and set aside to marinate for 20 minutes in the fridge. Then stir-fry in a little cooking oil till semi-cooked. Set aside to cool.
2. Wrap: Heat 250ml of water over the stove. Measure out 130g Soon Kuay flour and 2 tsp cooking oil and set them next to the stove. Prepare a pair of chopsticks too. When the water is boiling briskly, add in the flour and turn off the heat immediately. Add the oil and stir the mixture with the chopsticks till combined. Set aside to cool. Knead till smooth.
3. Divide the dough into 16 pieces. Use a rolling pin to roll one piece till flat. Place filling in the middle and pinch edges to wrap securely. Repeat till ingredients are used up.
4. Grease the steaming tray with cooking oil. Place dumplings on the tray and steam for 15 minutes. Serve immediately.
Stir-frying the prawns
Preparing the dough
Video: Wrapping the Har Gow (Prawn Dumplings)

The Wrap: You can see from the video that the dough was a little sticky to work with. But it really wasn’t that difficult to handle – just a few practices and I got used to it.
Steamed Prawn Dumpling
Variations in patterns: I tried making the dumpling look like a ‘bao’ (bun) by pinching the pleats so that they become the top of the dumpling rather than its side. It didn’t look too bad!
A Bao-lookalike Dumpling
Tefal: I used the Tefal Vitacuisine Steamer to cook the dumplings. It has a tray that is perfect for steaming these little treats! The rice was cooked at the same time (see video below).
Video: Steaming the Har Gow with the Tefal Vitacuisine Steamer

Yes, I would definitely use this soon kuay flour again to make dumplings and perhaps use other kinds of fillings. By the way, these dumplings may be deep-fried too. But steaming is way easier, not to mention healthier too!


Jo said...

Hi Oi Lin,
Thanks for the great site. You are so generous in sharing your knowledge with readers like us. Lots of good tips.

I do have one question which have been making me puzzled. I have the problem of cupcake liners detaching from the cupcakes soon after the cupcakes are removed from the oven. What could be the reason? Although this does not happen to all cupcakes, sometimes it does happen to at least half of the bacth of cupcakes I bake which is bad enough. Particularly annoyed when I need to sell the cupcakes. Look so terrible. Please help.

Oi Lin said...

Dear Jo,
Thanks for the kind compliments!
May I know what type of cupcake liners you use? If you use the kind of liners which are waxed inside, you may have the problem of cupcakes shrinking towards the middle and detaching themselves from the sides. If that's the case, use the unwaxed ones. Or perhaps it's the recipe you use. If your recipe consists of a lot of egg whites whipped till stiff peaks, your cupcakes will become overly 'airy' after baking. The air bubbles in these cakes collapse upon cooling, thereby pulling the cakes inwards and away from the sides of the cupcake liners. If that's the case, the recipe needs less egg whites and more flour, to give it more structure and 'sturdiness'.