Recipe: Leek & mozzarella dumplings

Mozzarella may sound like an unlikely dumpling filling, but try these and you'll be convinced in no time.

Mozzarella may sound like an unlikely dumpling filling, but try these and you'll be convinced in no time.

These were inspired by some fabulous gyoza I tasted on a recent trip to Kyoto – they make a great cheesy beer snack!

Makes 30-35
Preparation 45 minutes / Cooking 8-10 minutes per batch

For the dumplings
2 large leeks, trimmed, quartered, thinly sliced (about 300g)
2 teaspoons soy sauce
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon Japanese white rice vinegar
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon chilli flakes
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 spring onions, finely chopped
150g grated mozzarella
1 tablespoon cornflour
30-35 dumpling wrappers*
3-4 teaspoons neutral cooking oil or coconut oil

Put the leeks in a large, deep frying pan with the soy sauce, garlic, sugar, vinegar, salt, chilli flakes and ¼ cup of water. 

Stir to combine and cook, stirring, over a medium heat for 5 minutes until the leeks are soft and the water has evaporated. Remove from the heat and add the sesame oil and spring onions, then stir again to combine. 

Put the mozzarella and cornflour in a food processor and whiz to incorporate and to make the cheese finer. 

Add to the cooled leek mixture and stir well. Use heaped teaspoons of filling to make the dumplings, and chill until ready to cook.*

To cook, heat a teaspoon of oil in a non-stick frying pan and cook dumplings in batches, bottom side down, over medium-high heat for 1-2 minutes or until the bases are golden brown. 

Add ¼ cup of water and immediately cover with a steamer or pan lid. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the water has evaporated, then remove the lid. If you would like the dumplings to be more on the fried side than steamed, cook for a minute more on each side until golden.

For the dipping sauce & to garnish 
¼ cup black Chinese vinegar
⅓ cup light soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon caster sugar
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds  
1 bunch garlic or Chinese chives
1 cup mixed microgreens 

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While the dumplings cook, whisk the vinegar, soy, sesame oil and sugar together. Serve the dumplings with the dipping sauce, garnished with sesame seeds, chives and microgreens.

Click here for tips on dumpling wrappers, filling, folding and shapes.

WINE A succulent dry riesling, such as the Villa Maria Cellar Selection Dry Riesling 2014. 

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