Our last Veganuary inspiration recipe is also a nod to the Chinese New Year celebrations that will be going on this weekend. Dim Sum are tiny dishes, found in Chinese restaurants around the world. These dumplings are filled with sun-kissed mediterranean ingredients, resulting in a delicious clash of cultures. The strong tang of sundried tomatoes and olives are cooled by the mellow tofu. Pan-frying to get a crispy bottom is a nice finishing touch.
150 g/1 cup + 2 tablespooons Asian white wheat flour
80 ml/scant 1⁄3 cup water
MAKES 16 SKINS
Place the flour in a large mixing bowl and combine with the water to form a dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 20–25 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Separate and roll into two equal cylinders about 2.5 cm/ 1 inch in diameter. Cover with a damp kitchen cloth and set aside to rest for 30 minutes.
To prepare the skins, use a sharp knife to slice the dough cylinders into 16 equal pieces. On a lightly floured surface, flatten each piece with a rolling pin until it has a round shape and a diameter of around 7.5 cm/3 inches.
1 batch Wheat Dough,
200 g/7 oz. firm tofu, drained and sliced into small cubes
a pinch of salt
1 leek, thinly sliced
60 g/ ½ cup sundried tomatoes, finely chopped
50 g/scant ½ cup black pitted olives, finely chopped
2 button mushrooms, finely chopped
2 Chinese chive stalks, white parts removed and finely chopped
a handful of fresh Chinese parsley, finely chopped
1 teaspoon Sichuan pepper
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons vegan stir-fry sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
a red shallot, finely chopped
a handful of fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
Sprinkle a little salt over the tofu slices and set them aside for 30 minutes before squeezing out the excess water.
Prepare the wheat dough (see above). While the dough is resting, prepare the filling.
In a bowl combine the tofu with the chopped vegetables, parsley, seasonings, vegan stir-fry sauce and sesame oil. Mix well and place in the fridge for 30 minutes to chill.
Roll out the skins, continuing to follow the recipe on page 8. Put a large teaspoon of filling into the centre of a skin. Dip your fingertips in a small dish of water and slightly moisten the edge of half the skin. Fold in half and pinch the edges together to form a simple cresent shape. Fold the two ends of the dumpling together and overlap to create a Chinese ingot shape. Seal with another dab of water if needed. Repeat until all the mixture and skins have been used.
Gently lower the dumplings into a pan of boiling water and cover with a lid. As soon as the dumplings start to float they should be ready. Alternatively, you can lightly pan-fry the boiled dumplings to make the bottoms crispy and golden.
To make the dipping sauce, mix the ingredients together in a small bowl.
Serve the dumplings hot with the dipping sauce on the side.
For more dim sum recipes, check out Modern Dim Sum by Loretta Liu.