Saturday, October 25, 2008

Zen Temple Dumplings

You know by now that we're a sucker for a good vegetarian dumpling. We've made a whole bunch of different types. And we're big fans of using wonton wrappers! They are so versatile. Love them! So here is yet another vegetable dumpling recipe! It's fairly simple to others we've made except it uses asparagus, green onion, and water chestnut as the filling. This is exceptionally tasty and gives it a nice texture. We really liked it. We still like this other recipe more, but this one was still very tasty!!


Zen Temple Dumplings
CL, April 2007

"Zen" refers to a style of Buddhism (most Buddhists are vegetarian), and this dish is representative of what Zen Buddhist monks might eat at temples throughout Japan--hence the temple reference in the recipe title. Asparagus and green onions give these dumplings a lovely green hue. Enjoy them as an appetizer or a main course with a side of vegetables or tofu. The dumplings can be prepared up to a month in advance: Place uncooked dumplings on a baking sheet and freeze; store in zip-top freezer bags. To serve, steam the frozen dumplings for about 10 minutes or until the wonton wrappers are translucent.

1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely chopped peeled fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 cup (2-inch) slices asparagus (about 1/2 pound)
1/4 cup (1-inch) pieces green onions
1 (8-ounce) can whole water chestnuts, drained and coarsely chopped
1 (8-ounce) package mushrooms, stems removed
2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
1 1/2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
36 wonton wrappers
Cooking spray

1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon minced green onions
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 teaspoons dark sesame oil

To prepare dumplings, drop ginger and garlic through food chute with food processor on; process until minced. Add the asparagus, 1/4 cup green onion pieces, and water chestnuts; pulse 4 times or until chopped. Add mushrooms, 2 teaspoons sesame oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; pulse 4 times or until mixture is finely chopped.

Working with 1 wonton wrapper at a time (cover remaining wrappers with a damp towel to keep from drying), spoon about 2 teaspoons mushroom mixture in the center of wrapper. Moisten edges of wrapper with water. Bring 2 opposite corners together. Press edges together with fingertips to seal, forming a triangle. Place on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray while assembling; lightly cover with a towel or plastic wrap. Repeat procedure with remaining wonton wrappers and mushroom mixture.

Add water to a Dutch oven to a depth of 1 inch; bring to a boil. Coat a metal vegetable steamer with cooking spray. Arrange 9 dumplings in steamer, slightly overlapping. Steam dumplings, covered, 8 minutes or until tender. Remove dumplings from steamer; cover and keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining dumplings.

To prepare sauce, combine 1/3 cup soy sauce and remaining ingredients. Drizzle over dumplings.

Yield: 9 servings

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