Tag Archives: minced meat

Fried dumplings

Dumplings are the Chinese variant of ravioli or tortellini. They are cushions of dough with meat or vegetable filling. They can be bought frozen from the supermarket, but try making them by yourself! I often make them, and bring them to work to hand out to my colleagues. This is how one makes friends! I fry them in oil so that they can be kept longer and don’t stick to each other.

Dumplings 4

Dumplings 1Shopping:

  • Minced beef (500 grams)
  • Dried shii take mushrooms (6 pieces)
  • Sun flower oil (6 tablespoons)
  • Sesame oil (3 tablespoons)
  • Soy sauce ‘light’ (3 tablespoons)
  • Ground black pepper (2 tablespoons)
  • Salt (2 teaspoons)
  • Dumpling skins (1 pack)

If you like, you can make the skins by yourself using flour, but this will cost a lot of time and skill, so just buy them frozen from the Asian market. 1 Pack of 200 grams of dumpling/wonton skins is more than enough for a whole meal

Dumplings 2


    • Soak the shii take mushrooms in a bowl with warm water for 1 hour, and when they are soft, chop them into very fine pieces
    • Mix the mushrooms with the minced meat in a bowl, also add all the other ingredients, see photo


Dumplings 5

  • Prepare a small bowl with cold water, you will need this to make the dumpling skins stick when folding
  • Take one dumpling skin in the palm of your hand, place some filling in the middle (not too much! A mistake often made is putting too much filling, and then the dumpling can’t close. One or two teaspoons of filling is enough) Use a wet finger to rub the area of the skin around the filling, and then fold it closed, see photo


  1. Heat oil in a pan (not too much) and fry the dumplings for 1 minute on high fire
  2. Pay attention when the bottom of the dumplings become brown, then add 3-4 tablespoons of water to the pan and cover
  3. Let the dumplings steam for 3-4 minutes (the exact time depends on how many dumplings are in the pan, I have put 10. If you fry more dumplings at the same time, then count 1-2 minutes more)

Tip: why I added water? In this way the dumplings are steamed a bit, and not completely fried. The bottom will be crispy and the top nice and soft. Use a cover to cover the pan after adding water

TIP: dumplings can also be steamed. For this use a steaming basket or a sieve on top of a pan with boiling water. The dumplings will be soft, and must be eaten immediately, or else they stick and break easily

Fried dumplings are part of a meal with 3 dishes, together with Chinese fries and beef soup with radish and noodles

Beef pie

Beef pieI was planning to make dumplings, but I forgot to take out the dumping skins from the freezer, so, I needed to improvise. The beef pies I made are great as a snack, lunch or side dish. You don’t need many ingredients to make them, but some baking skills are required. These are spicy pies with a stuffing of beef mince, union and chilies. Obviously you can leave out the chilies if you don’t like spicy food. In that case you can try adding diced leek or sweet peppers

Beef pieShopping:

  • Wheat flour (use bread-flour if you can)  (800 grams)
  • Beef mince (400 grams)
  • Union (2)
  • Fresh chili peppers (4)
  • Ground black pepper (1 tablespoon)
  • Sesame oil (2 tablespoons)
  • (Sunflower) oil (4 tablespoons)
  • Some olive oil
  • Salt (1 teaspoon)
  • Soy sauce light (2 tablespoon)
Beef pieGet to work!

Step 1: making the dough:

Take a large bowl and add all the flour, then add some warm water and knead until the dough becomes flexible. Then add some olive oil. The amount of water you need depends, so just add a little at the time until the dough is good enough to fold into any shape.

Step 2: the filling

Chop the union and chilies in fine pieces. Then add the ground pepper, sesame oil, salt an soy sauce and mix well

Step 3: making the pies

See HERE for an example. First roll the dough into a long sausage and cut it into pieces of about 3 cm. Put one drop of olive oil onto your hands and rub them. Then, take one piece of dough and spread it out. Then use a rolling pin or, as I used, a small empty bottle, and roll out the dough into a long leaf. Spread the filling onto the leaf (not too much!) and roll it up and place it on its side. Make sure you leave about 3 cm of the leaf left at the end. Don’t put filling onto this part, (this part is for closing the pie, otherwise if there is meat on it it, it won’t stick). Then use your palm gently to push down the roll into a flat pie. This part is most fun! But don’t push too hard though, otherwise you will have broken pie! (See photos for an example)

Step 4: baking the pies

Heat oil on a low fire. Fry the pies for 4 to 5 minutes on one side and flip them, then fry the other side 4 to 5 minutes. See below

Beef pie

TIP: these pies are delicious warm or cold. I bring them to work to eat them (and share with my hungry colleges!) Have fun!

Ants in the tree

This dish is called: Ants in the tree, because of its appearance, later on you will see why haha. The literal translation from Chinese is: Mayi shang shuAnts are climbing the tree. This is a tasty and spicy dish; fast, nutritious and with full flavors. I cooked it last Thursday together with Oxtail soup with burdock. With these two dishes together you will have a full and filling meal. Preparation time for this dish is 20-30 minutes, and so if you combine it with the soup then plan your time so that you can start cooking half an hour before the soup is ready.

The named ingredients are for 2 persons, but basically you can make this for as many as you like (use 1 portion of noodles and 50 grams of minced meat per person, then you’ll have plenty)

Mieren in de boomIngredients:

  • Rice noodles (150 grams)
  • Minced meat (traditionally it is pork but you can also use beef, 100 grams)
  • Sambal Ulek (2 table spoons – or use any other chili paste if you don’t have sambal)
  • Shaoxing rice wine (2 tablespoons)
  • Soy sauce light (2 tablespoons)
  • Sugar (1 tablespoon)
  • Fresh ginger (2 slices)
  • Garlic (3 cloves)
  • Chives
Mieren in de boomPreparation:

  1. Soak the rice noodles in a bowl with warm water, let it stand for 10 minutes until soft.
  2. Chop the garlic and ginger as small as possible (don’t use a garlic press – we still want some texture)
  3. Heat a small amount of oil in a wok or cooking pan with a high brim. Fry the garlic and ginger 1 minute, then add the minced meat and stir fry 2 minutes
  4. Add 1 spoon of Shaoxing rice wine, soy sauce and half a spoon of sugar and stir fry 2 minutes more
  5. Take the noodles from the water and add to the wok, after that add the rest of the rice wine, soy sauce and sugar, and stir fry on high fire
  6. Use chopsticks or carefully use a fork to mix and stir the noodles
  7. If the noodles appear a little dry then add some hot water and oil
  8. Place the noodles with minced meat on a dish or bowl and garnish with fresh chives

Tip: you can add dried chili and even Szechuan pepper if you like it spicy!

Tip: for even more flavor, add a small spoonful of Szechuan bean sauce