Pork and Chive Dumplings (Shui Jiao)

  • Serves

    makes about 30 dumplings


To keep the wrappers from tearing while making these dumplings, we suggest finely chopping the scallions and grating the ginger. These classic snacks—which are boiled, not steamed or fried—were featured as part of Matt Gross's feature story on Taiwanese cuisine, "Taipei, Family Style" (April 2010).

Watch: How to Shape Dumplings (Hint: Think about dinosaurs!)


  • 4 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. Asian sesame oil
  • 4 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. black vinegar
  • Flour, for dusting
  • 3 12 oz. garlic, chives or scallions, finely chopped (1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 tsp. mushroom powder
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 12 tsp. grated ginger
  • 12 tsp. white or black pepper
  • 30 (4 1/2") round wonton wrappers
  • 1 lb. ground lean pork


Step 1

In a small bowl, whisk together 1 tsp. sesame oil, soy sauce, and vinegar; set aside. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle with flour; set aside. Put remaining sesame oil, along with the pork, garlic chives, mushroom powder, cornstarch, salt, ginger, and pepper, into a medium bowl and stir vigorously with a rubber spatula to combine.

Step 2

Working with one wrapper at a time, put a tablespoon of pork filling onto a wrapper, fold wrapper in half, and seal it with water, or follow instructions on facing page for forming dumplings into the traditional pleated crescent shape. Transfer each dumpling to reserved baking sheet; cover with a tea towel.

Step 3

Meanwhile, bring a 5-qt. pot of water to a boil. Working in three batches, boil dumplings until filling is cooked through, about 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer dumplings to a platter and serve with reserved dipping sauce.

See step-by-step instructions on forming Shui Jiao in the gallery, below.

1. Laying the wrapper in the open palm of one hand, place a tablespoon or so of filling in the center and moisten the wrapper's edge with water.
2. Pinch opposite edges of the wrapper together to form a half-moon shape that's open at both ends.
3. With the half moon resting in your palm, use the thumb and forefinger of your other hand to grip a single edge of the wrapper near one corner of the dumpling. Fold the edge of the wrapper inward, about halfway toward dumpling's center; pinch the fold firmly closed to form a pleat, leaving the end of dumpling open. Continue to work on same side of dumpling to form a second pleat; then seal that end of dumpling by folding the corner toward you and pinching it shut, creating a third pleat.
4. Repeat step 3 to create three identical pleats on the other side of the dumpling.

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