As you’ll know if you read the blog often, I’m really getting into my Korean food at the moment. This is mainly down to my other half Dave because he lived and taught there for a while and has helped me discover this amazing cuisine.
Kimchi is an essential part of Korean culture and no meal is complete with out. I love it, the spicy fizz of the fermented cabbage and chilli sounds a bit odd but when you try it, you’ll know what I mean. In fact, I love it so much, I had a go at making my own (see the recipe here). Sadly we’d eaten it all so we used shop bought Kimchi for these tasty mandu.
I received a copy of Kimchi: Essential Recipes of the Korean Kitchen for Christmas. Its a great book dedicated to that wonderful stuff and has some lovely and surprisingly easy recipes in it.
The below recipe for prawn & kimchi mandu is a tweak I’ve made on a recipe in the book for kimchi mandu. I’ve used ready made gyoza pastry and switched pork for prawns. You can see the original recipe here on google books. Mandu is very similar to gyoza and other asian dumplings but I’m sure if you asked a Korean they would tell you mandu is different.
Serves 4 as a snack
- 200g finely diced raw prawns
- 50g finely chopped spring onions
- 1 1/2 tbsp grated ginger
- 50g finely chopped onion
- 100g kimchi – liquid squeezed out and finely diced
- Ready made gyoza pastry sheets
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1/2 tsp chilli powder
- Salt and pepper
- Water for sealing (you’ll need a little pastry brush)
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 dash rice wine vinegar
- Mix together the prawns, chilli powder, garlic, kimchi, spring onions & onions.
- Take a gyoza pastry sheet and place around 1 tbsp of filling into the centre.
- Dampen the edges with water and gently fold over into a half moon shape encasing the filling firmly.
- Crimp of fold the doughs edges making sure its fully sealed. Sealing is more important than looks as no one wants a water logged mandu!
- Mix your ingredients for the dipping sauce and put into a small bowl.
- Drop the mandu into boiling water and cook for around 6 minutes. You’ll see the prawns turn pink inside the pastry as they cook.
- Drain the mandu using a slotted spoon and with the dipping sauce whilst still hot.
The one thing I CAN’T help you with is the delicate folding of the mandu. Mine are pretty ugly – but they taste SO good dipped in that salty sauce and slurped in one go. The crimping looks easier than it is! Also, be careful not to overcook them – keep an eye on your timings as water can start to get in and they are ruined. Final note – Don’t over fill the pan, cook in batches if needed!