Dumplings (or as they say in Korea, "mandoo") are always a crowd pleaser, and with this recipe, you can make your own. My mom, who is of Korean descent, has made mandoo for my younger brother and I since we were young. Making mandoo brings back good memories for me of family gatherings, parties and holiday events. Personally, we use ground pork for our meat filling; however, you can use any other ground meat as a substitute. You can also add various vegetables or glass noodles to make your mandoo fit your taste--it is completely customizable.
All ingredients are displayed above; however, you may add many other ingredients to suit your palate.
Ingredients are as follows:
- One pound of pork (or any other ground meat, such as turkey or beef--they all work!)
- Garlic powder (one teaspoon)
- Onion powder (one teaspoon)
- Ground ginger (one teaspoon)
- Cayenne red pepper (a dash)
- Soy sauce (two tablespoons)
- Rice vinegar (one tablespoon)
- Sesame oil (one-half teaspoon)
- Salt (to taste)
- Pepper (one-half teaspoon)
- One egg
- Wonton wrappers (package of 50)
- Vegetable oil (for cooking)
To make the pork filling, add ingredients one through 11 into a medium-sized bowl in no particular order. Mix thoroughly.
Mix the filling well until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
Next, gather the wonton wrappers and a small bowl of water. Add one teaspoon of the filling to the middle of the wrapper.
Be careful not to overfill the wrapper since it will leak or split when it gets cooked.
Dip your index finger into the water. Trace the sides of the wrapper with your finger (thus creating a "border" of water around the filling).
"Tracing” the sides of the wrapper with water allows the wrapper to stick together.
Next, fold one corner of the wrapper over to meet the other corner. By doing so, you form a triangle.
The easiest method of shaping mandoo is to form a triangle by diagonally folding the corners.
Crimp the open edges of the mandoo to seal it.
Crimping the sides of the mandoo seals it due to the water adherence.
A finished mandoo looks like the image below.
Above is a model of a finished mandoo.
Repeat this process until all filling is gone (one pound of meat should yield ~50 mandoo). In a pan, add one tablespoon of vegetable oil and put this on medium-high heat. Cook one side of the mandoo for two to three minutes (until golden brown). Flip it over and repeat.
Mandoo should be cooked for two to three minutes (or longer, if you desire a more crunchy wrapper).
Now, you're done! Mandoo is best when enjoyed with soy sauce--my family prefers our soy sauce with rice vinegar, scallions and Korean dried chili--or enjoy it with hot sauce or plain.
All photos by Julia Herlyn '23