There are very few pre-packaged/frozen meals available for us now (not that we ate them all that often, but for those rare times when you want convenience…). And then of those available, how many are actually edible? One. Exactly one. (perhaps an exaggeration, but there’s only been one I found acceptable.) It’s Saffron Road’s Manchurian Dumplings. It’s simply just vegetable dumplings in a spicy tomato broth with rice. We keep these in the freezer at all times, in case we need a quick lunch or dinner and don’t have time to cook or whatnot.
Then I went on a quest to make them myself! I found a bajillion recipes online, and so I’ve smooshed them together to get this one. And I must say, for a first time, it turned out really good! I’ll make a few minor changes next time, but this is a keeper.
Oh – and usually the dumplings are fried, I just baked them, and they still turned out delicious. So you can save yourself the time, mess, and calories of frying.
For the dumplings, finely shred or chop or (what I did) put in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped:
- 1/2 small head of cauliflower
- 1/2 medium white cabbage
- 2 carrots (med-lg size)
- 1/2 C green beans
- 2 green onions
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 T fresh grated ginger
- 1 jalapeno
- 3 Thai chiles (more or less depending on how hot you like it)
- 1 C cilantro
- 1 t salt
- 1 t pepper
Put it in a large bowl and add about 1-1 1/4 C flour (GF flour blend of some sort), stirring to incorporate. Form dumplings and place on a lined cookie sheet. You can make ‘em large or small, depends on how patient you are making the dumplings. Spray the dumplings with a bit of oil to help brown then.
Bake at 425 for 10 minutes, then reduce heat and finish baking at 375 for about 20-30 more minutes (until cooked through), turning once or twice. They may not remain perfectly round, but whatever. That’s what happens when you bake and not fry.
For the sauce:
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 teensy onion, finely diced (or 1/2 a large onion)
- 3 jalapenos, finely diced
- 8 oz mushrooms, chopped or sliced
- 1 t sesame oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1.5 T fresh ginger, grated
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 1 15oz can tomato sauce
- 1 C vegetable broth
- 1 t sugar
- 1 t salt
- 1/2 t crushed red pepper flakes
- 3 T tamari/soy sauce
- 1 T cornstarch dissolved in 3T water
In a large pan, heat the oil and sweat the onion and jalapeno about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until their moisture has been extracted and they begin to brown. Make a hole in the center and add the sesame oil, to that the garlic and ginger – stir until fragrant, then stir into the rest of the pan. Add the tomato sauce, broth, sugar, salt, tamari, and green onions, bring to a simmer and cook about 10 minutes. Add the cornstarch mixture to thicken and serve over the dumplings!
Over basmati rice, this is awesome, and you don’t need much more. We just happened to have a TON of green beans so what wasn’t used in the dumplings was steamed up and served on the side.