I feel like I just took the Christmas tree out and lights down, but the Lunar New Year is only 2 days away now. I can tell myself that 2015 so far has only been a practice for the real start, which is of course, February 19th.
Even without the excuse of celebrating the Lunar New Year, one of the dishes that I can eat anytime of the day or year is dumplings of all kinds. This particular one is gullim mandoo (also spelled as mandu), in which the dumpling filling is rolled around in potato starch instead of being wrapped in dumpling skins. The thin coating of starch doesn't show itself when dumplings first come out of boiling water. They look like meatballs or 'naked dumplings' which is another name for it in English. As they cool down, you will see the translucent starch coating appear along with its soft-chewy texture.
Here I used my go-to dumpling filling with a mix of ground beef and pork along with tofu and sweet pototo glass noodles (당면 dang myeon). Tofu and dangmyeon keep the filling moist and soft in Korean dumplings. Dangmyeon, with its stickiness, also helps to keep the filling together.
It is easy to make and fun to eat especially on a cold wintry day like this. Maybe a project for the Lunar New Year Day or for this weekend? Enjoy!
ROLLED DUMPLINGS (굴림만두) GULLIM MANDOO
Yield - about 40 dumplings
Beef and Pork Filling
1/2 cup dangmyeon (당면 glass noodles made with sweet potato starch)
1/2 block (7 oz.) extra firm or firm tofu
1/2 cup ground beef
1/2 cup ground pork
1/2 cup garlic chive, trimmed and finely chopped (can substitute with equal amount of scallion)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon ginger, peeled and grated
2 cloves garlic, peeled and grated
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon plus 1/2 cup potato starch
Simple Dipping Sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (고추가루 gochu garu)
1. Soak dangmyeon (당면 glass noodles made with sweet potato starch) in enough lukewarm water to cover the noodles. When it's soft enough to bend, cook in boiling water until soft. Rinse in cold water, drain and finely chop. Set aside.
2. Squeeze out excess water from tofu and crumble it to pieces.
3. Place chopped dangmyeon (당면), crumbled tofu, ground beef, ground pork, garlic chive, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, black pepper, salt and 1 tablespoon of potato starch in a bowl. Mix to combine completely. Cover with plastic and rest for 30 minutes to overnight in the refrigerator.
4. Spread 1/2 cup of potato starch on a baking sheet. Scoop out 1-inch balls with a small cookie scoop (or use hands or spoons) from the filling and place them on the baking sheet covered with potato starch. You should get about 40 meat balls. Roll the balls on starch and reshape as necessary. After the first rolling, you will see that the white starch gets quickly absorbed into the meat balls. After rolling the balls on starch 2~3 times, the starch coating should stay for a while.
5. Bring water to a boil in a pot over high heat. Drop the dumplings gently into water. The dumplings may sink at first then float to the top as water is heated and dumplings are cooked. Once they float to the top, cook for another 5 minutes to ensure that raw meat is completely cooked.
6. In the meantime, make a dipping sauce by combining soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil and red pepper flakes.
7. Remove dumplings from boiling water. Let cool for 5 minutes and serve warm with the dipping sauce.
그리다 (geu ri da) to draw
그립다 (geu rip da) to miss, to long for