A Potsticker by any other name…..

mandus and sauce….is called a mandu.   How exciting that this month our challenge would be the loveable and controversial potsticker.  Why controversial you ask?  Everyone on the planet who has ever had one has their own name for it and claim it to be the best.  So we have potsticker, dumpling, mandu, guotie, gyoza and the list could go on a little bit more, and to be honest I’ve been around the block and tasted some in their original countries.  Therefore, for the rest of my post I shall be referring to the potsticker as a mandu which I think tastes the best.  (I ate so many mandus when I lived in Korea I looked like a mandu)

This months challenge was brought to us by Jen from use real butter.   Jen gave us the challenge of making the entire mandu from wrapper to filling.  There were many fillings I could go with but I chose to stick with the pork filling.   filling

The hardest part of the whole challenge was in making the wrappers.  There are only two ingredients in the wrapper, but getting the right consistency was hard for me.  I wasn’t sure what I was going for in the first place, but I knew rock wasn’t it.  Once I got a pliable dough I started assembling the mandu.making mandus 

Making all the mandus was the most time consuming part and I think it could be all kinds of fun if you have some friends over and do it as a group gig.  (note to self: make some friends)mountain-of-mandu

Once I assembled I had to decide which way to cook them.   I decided to go a little crazy and do two methods-steamed and panfried.  I learned two things from the challenge.  1. The wrappers need to be super thin,  thinner than you think.  And 2.  I dislike ginger.  I’ve used ginger many times before, but the ginger in this recipe was too strong and overpowered the taste of the filling.  I definitely recommend using a bit less.  The consensus from boy and man was that they were a good substitute for the real thing….but I feel that for all the work it takes I need to get a tastier filling.   mandus

The best part of the dish was the dipping sauce.  I was able to use my most favorite cookbook and make a Tahini soy sauce.  I’ve been wanting to try it and now I had the chance.  It was mashisayo (delicious). 

Tahini Soy Sauce (adapted from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian)

½ cup soy sauce

¼ cup honey

2 tbs. sesame oil

¼ cup tahini

2 cloves of garlic

Pinch of brown sugar


Combine all ingredients and stir until sugar is dissolved.  Use immediately or refrigerate.

Daring Cooks 1~Me 1


12 Responses to “A Potsticker by any other name…..”

  1. 1 jenskitchen
    June 14, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    Great looking potstickers! Love the sauce…


  2. June 14, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    Beautiful juicy dumplings you made there. Congratulations!

  3. June 15, 2009 at 4:50 am

    Nicely executed challenge. They look beautiful with lovely golden crisp bottoms.

  4. June 15, 2009 at 11:28 am

    mandus and mashisayo two new words from your posting. Your dumplings look fab – and the colour is excellent. Excellent work on this challenge.

  5. June 15, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    Your dumplings look really nice. Lucky you, getting to eat dumplings in different countries! Great job!

  6. June 15, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    Ooh – very interesting sauce! And thanks for the lesson on potstickers/dumplings/mandus! Hottest food I’ve ever had in my life was Korean – I need to learn how to make it for sure!

  7. June 15, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    Ooh, I’m intrigued by the tahini soy sauce!

  8. June 15, 2009 at 8:30 pm

    Your sauce was very interesting and your dumplings look like they were folded by a professional. Enjoy the day!

  9. June 15, 2009 at 9:50 pm

    The Tahini sauce sounds so good. I will have to try it next time I find the patience to make dumplings.

  10. June 15, 2009 at 9:57 pm

    Tahihi soy sauce is SUCH a good idea. I will definitely be keeping that in the mental file cabinet. I always which that potstickers would have a denser sauce that really sticks and I think tahini sounds like the perfect ingredient to achieve that. Great job!

  11. June 18, 2009 at 1:25 am

    Great looking dumplings. I’ve never tasted a korean mandu before, but they sounded delicious.

  12. 12 apes
    July 22, 2009 at 2:38 am

    Wow, this one really blew me away! That’s some involved pot-sticker making! You know me, the short-cut girl . . . I make my egg rolls with the coleslaw mix! LOL. This is why YOU are the chef and I am the consumer of your creations. 🙂 Well, when you actually create them for me. Ouch! LOL I’ll be looking forward to some of your tasty dishes when I come to visit . . . hee hee.

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