Category: Cooking Abroad

Sweet and Spicy Salmon Dumpling Recipe

Sweet and Spicy Salmon Dumpling Recipe

Hi everyone! Today I want to share a really yummy dumpling recipe with you! I already shared this with my backers on Kickstarter, so if you want to get a hundred more dumpling recipes, be sure to check out the campaign!

You can find the dumpling wrapper recipe here.

This flavorful recipe is sweet with a kick of pepper. Sure to be your new favorite!

Sweet and Spicy Salmon Dumplings

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This recipe says you can use cooked salmon (maybe from a leftover meal at home or from a restaurant), but you can also used fresh salmon. The dumplings will get hot enough when fried to cook the salmon. You can also use canned salmon in a pinch. 

¾ cup honey
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup brown sugar, packed
¼ cup pineapple juice
Juice of 1 lemon
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper
Dash of paprika
Dash of garlic powder
1 cup cooked salmon, chopped or shredded
12 dumpling wrappers
1 cup of oil, if frying

  1. In a saucepan, add all filling ingredients except salmon and heat over medium heat. Stir occasionally until sauce begins to boil. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes until syrupy.
  2. Remove from heat and blend in salmon.
  3. Drain sauce from salmon and set aside.
  4. Spoon salmon mixture into dumpling wrappers and pinch closed.
  5. Cook dumplings.
    • To fry dumplings, preheat oil in a wok for 30 seconds on high heat, then lower heat to medium. Cook dumplings on each side for about 3 minutes or until golden brown.
    • To steam dumplings, place in a steamer basket or on an elevated plate in a wok over water on high heat for about 10 minutes.
  6. Always cut a dumpling open to make sure it is cooked through.
  7. Serve hot with excess sauce for dipping.

To get more than a hundred Crazy Dumpling recipes, check out Crazy Dumplings II: Even Dumplinger, now on Kickstarter!

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Crazy Dumplings II – Awesome First Week!

Crazy Dumplings II – Awesome First Week!

Crazy Dumplings II had an awesome first week on Kickstarter! We reached our goal in less than 5 days, and then blew past it, raising 150% of our goal in just 7 days! We have over 170 backers and were named as a Staff Pick! If anyone has done a Kickstarter before, you know how important being a Staff Pick can be. Over 40 of our backers found us after checking out the Staff Pick pages.

Crazy-Dumplings-2_03aWe had A LOT of returning backers, which is so amazing! That means not only did they like the first Crazy Dumplings cookbook, they came back for seconds! To celebrate hitting our goal, I posted a new dumpling recipe. You can see it here and try it for yourself.

I have to give a shout-out to all of our amazing backers so far:

Madisen Trueg, Vidya, Sarah Mosley, ATH, evan, Hazel O’Keeffe, Aimee Smith, Gail, Nathan Kellen, Joshua Martin, Brandon Marris, Lisa Eyers, tofuji, Tim Meakins, Daniel, Sara, Amy, Pamela Izzo, Vincent Briamonte Jr, Jessica Zhu, Alex Tsue, Joshua, Mj, DeHart, Daniel Moo, Bruce Bellak, Marco Seidel, Ineke Allez, Ruben Schäfer-Baehre, Dawn Smith, Tyler Whitlock, Josh, Ellen, Richard Fresow, Theresa, Breanna Gallagher, Devin, Roxy Pope, Melissa Smith, MDrake42, Kelly Kohagura, Duke Games, Drew, Stiemke, Dwight Bishop, Kelly Beecher, Vivianne Audiss, Chris Sandy, Alistair, Kristin, Rabon, Heather Hostetler, ryan Harrison, Thilo, Keba Jackson, Megan, Brandon, Jablonski, Rob Steinberger, Daniel Munday, Koendert Ruifrok, Laura Lundy, Nicole, Pelchat, Seth Anderson, Krista, James Mattly, Bob T Kozono, Shane barker, William Hall, Evonne Okafor, Flint, Xander, Jessica Slavik, Laurie Kibbe, Arimenthe, Angela Pritchett, Celeste Tamura, Kelly, Aaron Beard, Stephie I., Amelia McLearan Hite, Sara H. Lappi, Damian Morgan, Johan Buts, Carrie Lillie-Lugo, Stephenie C-L, kyle trudel, Rebekah Bernard, J.A.W., Hilla-Mari Heikkilä, Shauna Ratliff, Regan Smith, Dean Gillis, Sara Doty, Erin Rowett, Alison Benowitz, Rebecca Dixon, Ahad Al Saud, Joan Schulz, Tina Young, Jessica Dulin, David Miller, jenelle campion, Josh Garneau, Tina Tipton, Visalachy Sittampalam, Camey, Jonathon ‘jono’ Zachariah, Willhameena power, Eileen LaBoone, Aline Hong, John Gillespie, Cristie Fagnano, Rachel Alystine, Danielle Greene, Dane, Cullen Gilchrist, Bruce Martin, Heather Whittaker, Marina Turovsky, Carolyn Brindle, ExecutionGlitch, Ludvig Carleson, Dan Canzonieri, Louise, Alex Ambers, Dan Rothstein, Burgin Howdeshell, Stefanie, oliver, Zach B., AC, Jonas Claumarch, Jen Brown, Robert McKeagney, Vincent B. Donadio, Jacob Cord, Neil Graham, Frank Cernik, Stine, Aaron B, Ted Beyer, James McKendrew, Victor A Eichhorn, P-P-P-P-Powerbook, Mark Henderson, Sinzor, Joseph Moyer, Donna Nutter, Daniel Lanigan, Gearsoul, Kit Wickliff, Eileen Hendriksen, Steffen Heise, Keith Solomon, Timo Glander, Max, Lenaldo Branco Rocha, Margaret St. John, Stefan Winkler, Black Squadron Monkey King 42, David Spaxman, Geoff Peterson, Marijo Yates, Rob Coke, H J, Luke Otlang, Scott Loonan, Jaime Ruiz-Morales, Sören Koch, Amy, Michael Brand, Nicholas Smillie, James, Tom Wardill, Kate Scott, MrsDHaggis, Kim Dyer, Thierry Corlieto.

Who else wants to join the list? Jump over to Kickstarter right now and back Crazy Dumplings II: Even Dumplinger right now!

Crazy Dumplings II is now on Kickstarter!

Crazy Dumplings II is now on Kickstarter!

Crazy Dumplings II: Even Dumplinger is now on Kickstarter!

Dumplings II Front CroppedDumplings from around the world and the most unique combinations of ingredients come together in Crazy Dumplings II: Even Dumplinger. From Thailand, Vietnam, India, and of course across China, traditional snacks are given a new twist when stuffed into dumpling wrappers. Sweet, savory, spicy, and all delicious, Crazy Dumplings II: Even Dumplinger will take you where your taste buds have never been before!

After the success of last year’s Crazy Dumplings Cookbook, I can’t get dumplings off my mind. Every time I come across a new recipe, the first thing I think is “how can I turn this into a dumpling?” So I’m back with dozens of crazy new dumpling recipes you will want to try!

China’s favored dish, the dumpling (jiaozi in Chinese), can be found on every street corner, in every restaurant, and in every kitchen in China, but they are all pretty much prepared the same way: a bit of meat, some garlic and ginger, and a bit of vegetables if you’re lucky. Even a visit to the freezer section at any grocery store displays hundreds of packages of dumplings that all look and taste the same.

But the dumpling is so versatile! Have you ever tried stuffing a dumpling with chicken? Pesto? Egg tart filling? No? Hardly anyone has! My cookbook, Crazy Dumplings II, takes this simple staple food and prepares it in ways you never thought possible! From Avocado Chipotle Dumplings to Lamb Pomegranate Dumplings to Pumpkin Cream Cheese Dumplings, a world of foods is available to you in an easy dumpling wrapper with Crazy Dumplings.

About the Book

Crazy Dumplings II will contain dozens of new recipes plus dumpling recipes submitted by backers, the dumpling wrapper recipe, and several original sauce and dip recipes such as Avocado Lime Sauce and Honey Chipotle Sauce. There are dumpling recipes for appetizers, main courses, and desserts. I have done my best to include some vegetarian recipes, but dumplings are so versatile, you can turn almost any recipe in the book vegetarian, and the book will explain how!

About the Campaign

There are lots of new Backer Rewards, including an updated Amazing Dumplinger and adorable Plushy Dumplings!

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You can also get last year’s original Crazy Dumplings Cookbook at a discounted rate!
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I’ll also be sharing lots of new dumpling recipes only with Kickstarter backers, so click here to hurry over to Kickstarter and back Crazy Dumpings II: Even Dumplinger right now!

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Pumpkin Pie

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Pumpkin Pie

Hi everyone. Welcome to my sixth post dedicated to helping you plan the perfect Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. I first wrote about making sure you have all the right utensils and about how to prepare the all-important turkey. I followed up with how to make stuffing from scratch, how to make a delicious river of gravy, how to make mashed potatoes, and how to make drop biscuits. Today, we are going to round out your Thanksgiving feast with a pumpkin pie!

First off, I’m not going to talk about how to make the crust. This is for 2 reasons. 1) Crusts are hard to make but should not be hard to purchase. Even though “pie” is not popular in China, egg tarts are. So just use egg tart shells and make mini-pumpkin pies. 2) You can completely bypass the shell altogether by using dumpling wrappers! Why not bring a little China to your Thanksgiving dinner table?

We are going to make the pumpkin pie filling from scratch because pumpkins are usually easy to find and the pumpkin puree is not that hard to make.

dessert dumplingsWhat you need:

1 small pumpkin (1 cup pumpkin puree)
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp allspice powder
½ tsp ginger powder
1 egg
6 oz evaporated milk
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
12 dumpling wrappers (made from scratch or purchased) or 12 egg tart shells
1 cup of oil for frying

Preparing the Pumpkin

  1. Cut the pumpkin in half and remove the seeds. Don’t be afraid to scrape the sides and get all that stringy stuff out.
  2. Place the pumpkin into a steamer basket on the stove (you can cut the pieces smaller if they don’t quite fit). Steam pumpkin, covered, over high heat for 20-30 minutes or until it is soft.
  3. Scoop softened pumpkin meat out of the rind. Puree pumpkin meat in a blender until smooth.
  4. Done! You will only need 1 cup of puree for this recipe. If you have extra puree, you can freeze it and save it for future dumplings or increase the rest of the recipe to make lots of dumplings (not like they will go to waste since they will be eaten up so quickly!).

Making the pumpkin pie filling for dumplings or egg tart shells

  1. Mix together 1 cup of pumpkin puree with the sugar, spices, egg, and evaporated milk.
  2. For pumpkin pie dumplings:
    • Spoon mixture into dumpling wrappers and pinch closed. If the mixture is too runny to work with, put the mixture into the refrigerator for about 20 minutes to set up.
    • To fry dumplings, preheat oil for 30 seconds on high heat, then lower heat to medium. Cook dumplings on each side for about 3 minutes or until golden brown.
  3. If you are using egg tart shells:
    • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (200 degrees Celsius)
    • Fill the shells about 3/4 of the way full with pumpkin pie filling.
    • Bake for about 30 minutes or until the tops are golden.
  4. Serve hot or chilled.

You can find the Pumpkin Pie Dumpling recipe, along with almost a hundred more, in my cookbook Crazy Dumplings, now available on Amazon! 

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Dumplings. Wontons. Jiaozi. This remarkably simple food is found throughout Asia and in Chinese restaurants and kitchens around the world, but have you ever filled a dumpling wrapper with chicken? Lobster? North American Plains Bison? Hardly anyone has! The Crazy Dumplings Cookbook features over 100 recipes with some of the craziest and most delicious dumpling filling recipes you will ever see. From Chicken Taquito Dumplings to Timey-Wimey Dumplings to a dumpling for your dog, Crazy Dumplings will show you all the crazy things you can stuff into a dumpling wrapper for an easy meal or snack.

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Biscuits

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Biscuits

Hi everyone. Welcome to my fifth post dedicated to helping you plan the perfect Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. I can’t believe how close Thanksgiving is getting! I’m going to have to move up the frequency of these posts to get done in time for the big day!

I first wrote about making sure you have all the right utensils and about how to prepare the all-important turkey. I followed up with how to make stuffing from scratch and how to make a delicious river of gravy. Yesterday I explained how to make the best mashed potatoes ever. Today we are going to move on to fluffy biscuits!

Two important things: 1) We are going to make drop biscuits instead of the more traditional round, buttermilk biscuits because buttermilk biscuits simply have too many variables and require a lot of counter space, something many kitchens in China don’t have; and 2) biscuits require butter, so like I pointed out in the mashed potato recipe, these might not be possible for you or could require significant planning.

Biscuits

drop biscuitsDrop biscuits are super easy to make and a lot of fun. Make sure your hands are clean before starting this recipe because they are going to get messy!

Preheat your over to 450 degrees Fahrenheit (230 degrees Celsius) and lightly grease a baking sheet.

In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of flour, 2 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 cup cold butter with your hands. Yes! Get your hands all up in there! You want to squeeze the butter together with the flour until the mixture resemble coarse cornmeal.

Once the flour/butter mix is done, add 1 cup of cold milk. Blend together with a spoon or fork. Drop batter on to the baking sheet by the spoonful. You should be able to get 12 biscuits out of this recipe. It’s OK if you need to add more batter to one biscuit or take some batter off of a few of them to make an extra one. Whatever! These biscuits are flexible and don’t have to look perfect.

Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Serve hot with honey, jam, or cranberry sauce.

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Mashed Potatoes

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Mashed Potatoes

Hi everyone. Welcome to my fourth post dedicated to helping you plan the perfect Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. I first wrote about making sure you have all the right utensils and about how to prepare the all-important turkey. I followed up with how to make stuffing from scratch and how to make a delicious river of gravy. Today, I’m going to explain how to make the best mashed potatoes ever!

Mashed Potatoes

Roasted Garlic Mashed PotatoesUnfortunately, mashed potatoes might cause trouble for some expats living abroad because milk products can be hard to find in some countries, like China. While you can sometimes find milk substitutes (sterilized milk and powdered milk can be used in place of American-style pasteurized milk), there really isn’t a substitute for butter (we will also come across this issue when making the biscuits). So if you are planning to make mashed potatoes, plan ahead and buy the butter online or in the nearest major city.

With this recipe, be flexible. Everyone likes their mashed potatoes a little different (more buttery, stiffer, extra salty, etc.) and depending on how many guests you have, your recipe might need to be adjusted.

As a general rule, you will want one potato per guest. You might adjust this if you have freaking huge potatoes or if you are making a lot of different sides, but it is a good rule of thumb and, really, who care if you make too much. Thanksgiving leftovers are the best.

Scrub, rinse, and rough peel your potatoes, by which I mean don’t worry about peeling the potatoes completely. Potato skins have their own distinct flavor and a lot of nutrients. Of course, you can completely peel them if you want or you could not peel them at all if you like a lot of potato skin in your mashed potatoes.

Uniformly chop your potatoes. They don’t have to be very small, but the pieces should be roughly the same size so they cook uniformly. Cover the chopped potatoes completely with water. Bring to a boil, lower heat to medium, and continue to boil the potatoes until they are all fork-tender, about 20 minutes.

After the potatoes are soft, drain completely. Return potatoes to the pot and use a fork or hand masher to start mashing the potatoes. Slowly add in 1 Tbsp of butter, 1/4 cup of milk per potato along with dashes of salt and pepper, mixing and tasting as you go. This way you can be sure to get the taste and texture the way you like it.

Serve warm.

Of course, this is just a simple recipe. You could use cream instead of milk if you have it, you can top it with chives, or you can add roasted garlic. Be flexible and make your potatoes your own!

 

 

 

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Gravy

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Gravy

Hi everyone. Welcome to my third post dedicated to helping you plan the perfect Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. I first wrote about making sure you have all the right utensils and about how to prepare the all-important turkey. I followed up with how to make stuffing from scratch. Today, I’m going to explain how to make a delicious gravy to top your turkey and stuffing with.

Gravy

turkeygravyYou have to top your turkey and stuffing with a river of gravy. If you want, you can mince and fry up the turkey giblets and add them to the gravy.

In a skillet or wok, heat up 1/4 cup of butter or oil. Whisk in 1/4 cup flour to form a roux. Let this cook for a minute to brown, but don’t let it burn. Slowly mix in 1-2 cups of turkey juices, depending on how thin you want your gravy, whisking as you go. You can also use chicken broth if you don’t have enough turkey juices. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Next time, I’ll talk about mashed potatoes!

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Stuffing

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Stuffing

Hi everyone. Welcome to my second post dedicated to helping you plan the perfect Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. Last time, I wrote about making sure you have all the right utensils and about how to prepare the all-important turkey. Today, I’m going to talk about your turkey’s main squeeze, the stuffing!

The Stuffing

111710-hendricks-stuffing-400The perfect partner for turkey is stuffing. In a major metropolitan area, boxed stuffing is pretty easy to find. But if you live where it is hard to find or if the import stores run out, don’t worry – you can still make it from scratch.

Place 4 cups of bread into the refrigerator overnight to dry out (most recipes say leave it out on the counter, but in my experience, most Chinese kitchens are too humid for this and you’ll just end up with moldy bread). After the bread is dry, chop into 1 inch (2.5-cm) cubes.

In a skillet or wok, heat up 2 tablespoons of oil or butter. Add in 1 cup of diced celery and 1 cup of diced onions and sautee until they are slightly softened but still have some crunch. Add in 1 cup of turkey broth (if you don’t have enough, you can add in 1 cup of chicken broth or 1 cup of water and 1 tablespoon of chicken bouillon). Stir until hot. Add in seasonings such as dried or fresh herbs (rosemary, thyme, sage), salt, and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and gently fold in breadcrumbs. The bread should be moist, but not soggy. You can add in more liquid as needed.

Transfer mixture to a baking dish and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius) for 30 minutes (this step is not necessary, but is recommended).

 

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Turkey

Planning the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner While Living Abroad – The Turkey

FOOD. It’s pretty much the main topic of conversation among expats and never more so than around Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is one of the worst times to be away from home, so many Americans do their best to recreate a traditional Thanksgiving dinner for their new friends and family overseas. But cooking while living in a foreign country poses many challenges. Here are some tips and tricks for planning the perfect Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. Today,I’ll talk about getting set up and the turkey. Be sure to come back over the next few days as I also talk about how to make stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, biscuits, and finally, finish with a homemade pumpkin pie!

thanksgiving-party-webUtensils

Cooking Thanksgiving dinner requires some special kitchen utensils. You at least need a roasting pan. A baster is also good, as is aluminum foil. You will want to make sure you have enough serving plates, bakeware, flatware and a carving knife. The recipes will also require some special seasonings you probably don’t have in your spice rack such as cloves and rosemary. Sit down ahead of time and make a menu, a guest list and then a shopping list. Shop early. The import stores in Sea World have everything you need, but only a limited supply. Don’t wait until the last minute! If you don’t live in a major metropolitan area like Shenzhen, you can find many of these things on Taobao. Also, if you live in Shenzhen, Party Jumbo has some fun Turkey Day-themed plates and napkins

turkeyThe Turkey

The turkey is the most important part of Thanksgiving dinner. It really isn’t Thanksgiving without a turkey. However, turkeys are a new world animal and, unlike other new world foods, have not grown in popularity in China. If you live in a large metropolitan area, they are getting easier to find. Metro import supermarket usually has a few in stock, but not many. It is a good idea to get your turkey at least a week early before they run out. Of course, then you have the problem of storing it until you are ready to thaw it, which can be difficult if you have a small freezer, so plan accordingly.

If you can’t get a turkey, roasted duck or goose is an acceptable substitute.

If you are planning on roasting a turkey, though, be cautious of the size of your turkey. In America, we tend to choose our turkey based on pounds because we all have large enough ovens to handle almost any turkey. But in China, if you have an oven, most likely it is an oversized toaster oven, which still isn’t very big. Hot tip — pick your turkey based on inches instead of pounds! Measure the inside of your oven. Then, measure the turkeys at the store and pick one that fits in your oven.

Cooking the Turkey

Your turkey will need to thaw for several hours. Place your turkey in a sink full of cold water. Change the water every 30 minutes. It will need to thaw for 30 minutes for every pound.

Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius.

Remove the turkey from the packaging. Reach into the turkey’s cavity and remove the giblet pack. Hot Tip — unlike American turkeys, Chinese turkeys also have their heads in the cavity, so just be prepared because it can be a shock the first time you pull one out.

Pat the turkey dry and place it breast side up in the roasting pan. Brush the turkey with a light layer of butter, oil, or mayonnaise. You can also season the turkey with garlic powder, onion powder, rosemary, thyme, Italian seasonings or whatever you like. Place the turkey in the oven, but make sure you can see the pop-out thermometer.

Your turkey will take 3-4 hours to cook, depending on the size. At about the two-hour mark, the turkey’s juices should start escaping and it should start browning on the top. Place a sheet of aluminum foil over the turkey to keep it from browning too quickly. You can also start basting the turkey about every 30 minutes to redistribute the juices.

When the thermometer pops, your turkey is done. Remove it from the oven and let it set for 30 minutes, basting occasionally. Reserve the juices for the stuffing and the gravy.

Check back for more recipes to help you plan the perfect Thanksgiving Dinner!

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