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Modern Dim Sum

by: Loretta Liu

London UK: Ryland Peters & Small 2016, $16.95, Hardbound
ISBN: 978-1-84975-708-9

Reviewed by: Jacqueline M. Newman
Fall Volume: 2016 Issue: 23(3) page(s): 23

This book has twenty-seven recipes, each with its method in long detailed paragraphs. They follow five basic dough wrappers and are then followed by others titled: meat; poultry; fish and seafood; vegetables; sweet (the lack of capitalization is theirs).

The egg dough needs the fewest ingredients but does need twenty to twenty-five minutes of kneading. After that, it gets rolled thinly, but only after resting for half an hour. Its ingredients are: one cup and two tablespoons white flour, three tablespoons water, and one egg, all to make sixteen skins.

The author thanks her eighty-five year old granny who was born in China and was the daughter of a magistrate for her inspiration. After marriage granny moves to Malaysia for her culinary education and yummy snack food exposure.

The color photographs of every recipe are by Louise Hagger. They show what the finished dumplings will look like and are a great help when following the author's recipes.

After them, a single-page with this book's four-column recipe index. The inside rear cover says this author is an award-winning chef who grew up in Singapore, learned French cooking at the Raffles Hotel with Alain Ducasse, and taught it in London. There, she supplied macaroons to retailers. This volume is edited by Alice Sambrook, the book’s food stylist is Emily Kydd.
Pumpkin and Leek Dumplings
1 batch egg dough (See: second paragraph of this review)
3½ ounces firm doufu, drained well, and cut in small cubes
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup steamed pumpkin
1 small leek, finely chopped
2 Chinese chives, white parts discarded, green parts chopped
1/4 cup fresh coriander, chopped
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 Chinese cabbage leaf, chopped
1 teaspoon ground Sichuan peppercorns
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 Tablespoons stir-fry sauce
2 Tablespoons sesame oil
2 Tablespoons flour
black vinegar for dipping
1. In a large freezer-safe bow, use your hand and mix the pork, eggs, soy sauce, water chestnuts, two teaspoons of the sesame oil, the sugar, cornstarch, wine, and the ginger.
2. Freeze this for half an hour until firm.
3. Now drain the rice and stir in the remaining soy sauce and the one-quarter teaspoon sesame oil.
4. Wet one's hands and roll one heaping tablespoon of the meat mixture into balls, and roll each one gently pressing them until the rice sticks. Then freeze them if they feel too soft.
5. Line a bamboo steamer with the cabbage leaves, put the pearl dumplings on not touching each other, and steam over boiling water for fifteen minutes. Then serve with the black vinegar as the dipping sauce.

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