Chicken Soup Dumplings | Xiao Long Bao
Chicken Soup Dumplings are inspired by famous Chinese dumplings, Xiao Long Bao, which are filled with meat and small gelatin cubes that melt into a flavorful “soup/broth” when steamed.
- Servings About 40 chicken soup dumplings
For the soup/gelatin:
- 947 ml (4 cups) chicken broth
- 3 scallions, chopped
- 1 large knob of ginger, sliced
- 10 ml (2 teaspoons) agar agar powder (available in some supermarkets and Asian grocery stores)
For the filling:
- 454 grams (1 pound) chicken thighs
- 3 scallions, chopped
- 20 ml (1 heaping tablespoon) minced ginger
- 15 ml (1 tablespoon) soy sauce
- 15 ml (1 tablespoon) toasted sesame oil
- 30 ml (2 tablespoons) Chinese cooking wine (Shaoxing rice wine)
- 5 ml (1 teaspoon) salt
- 1.3 ml (1/4 teaspoon) ground black pepper
- Pinch of sugar
For the dough:
- Store-bought wrappers such as “soup dumpling wrappers” or “Shanghai- Style dumpling wrappers," thawed and ready to use
- For the soup/gelatin: In a medium saucepan, combine chicken broth, scallions, and ginger. Place over medium-low heat and simmer for few minutes. Use a spider spoon or something similar to fish out and discard the ginger and scallion pieces.
2. Turn the heat to high and bring the chicken broth to a boil. Sprinkle agar agar over the broth and mix everything until well combined. Let it boil for 2-3 minutes then remove from heat.
3. Pour the mixture into a rectangular cake pan 23 by 33 cm (9 by 13 inches) or something similar. Let it cool in the refrigerator or on a counter top for 1-2 hours until solid. This can be made 1-2 days in advance and refrigerated, covered, until ready to be used.
4. Once set, use a knife to cut the agar-agar into a crisscross pattern to make small cubes about .6 cm (1/4 inch) in size.
5. For the filling: In a medium bowl, mix the ground chicken with scallions, ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, Shaoxing wine, salt, pepper, and sugar. Add about 355 ml (1.5 cups) agar-agar cubes into the mix until well combined; set aside.
6. To assemble a dumpling, take a wrapper in your left hand, then gently wet the top edge of wrapper with water using your right index finger. Take about 15 ml (1 tablespoon) of filling and position in the center of the wrapper. If desired, add a couple of agar-agar cubes on top for extra juiciness.
7. Use both your index fingers and thumbs to pleat and pinch the edge of the dough together to form a closed satchel. Be sure to pinch and twist the dough at the end to completely seal your dumpling. Repeat the process until you are done with all the filling.
8. The dumplings may be steamed immediately or frozen for cooking later. To freeze dumplings, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange dumplings with 1.3 cm (1/2 inch) in between. Freeze the dumplings for few hours, then transfer into a ziplock bag. Frozen dumplings can be steamed directly without thawing.
9. To steam dumplings, whether fresh or still frozen, arrange them on a steamer basket lined with Napa cabbage or coated with non-stick cooking spray. Bring the steamer to a rolling boil and steam dumplings until they are slightly puffy and translucent, 8-10 minutes. Enjoy with your favorite chili oil, dipping sauce, or black vinegar.