Sunday, 2 October 2011

How to Make: Chinese Chive and Prawn Pan Fried Dumplings 韭菜虾饺 (Gai Coi Har Gow) Chinese Dim sum/Yum Cha Recipe

Dim sum/Yum Cha is favoured throughout the world (Click here to see what Dim Sum/Yum Cha is). Delicious snack-like dishes offer such elegance to the eyes and the multitude of textures in every dish is truly a unique experience. Today, I'm sharing the recipe of a very common dish to see at Dim Sum/Yum Cha-they are Chive and Prawn Pan Fried Dumplings 韭菜虾饺 (Gai Coi Har Gao). At the Dim Sum/Yum cha restaurants, they are commonly distributed by trollies equipped with a portable electrical grill or griddle attached. They are pre-steamed and are reheated and pan fried as per order right in front of you. I remember I saw Giada de Laurentiis eating this dish on her show, ''Weekend Getaways'' on Food Network TV! So this dish is definitely a favourite throughout the world! The Chinese garlic chives can be purchased at almost all Chinese and Vietnamese grocers, but you can substitute it with other kinds of chives and with the addition of some chopped garlic. The Chinese garlic chive have broader leaves and a much stronger garlic taste and aroma to them. The skin of the dumpling a crisp exterior and a soft chewy interior when they are ready, it's absolutely delicious! Please note that the recipe requires wheat starch! Not all purpose wheat flour. This is very important as wheat starch has no gluten which allows it to be soft. You can easily get it cheaply at any Asian market.

Chive and Prawn Pan Fried Dumplings 韭菜虾饺 (Gai Coi Har Gao)
By: Chewie Recipes
Yields: 12-14 dumplings
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes


  • 170 gm of Wheat starch (1 1/3 cups)
  • 60 gm of Tapioca starch (1/3 cup)
  • 250mL of boiling water (1 cup)
  • 5 mL of oil (1 tsp)
  • pinch of salt
  • 180 gm of Chinese garlic chives* (6.5 oz)
  • 130 gm of raw prawns (1/3 lb or 4.5 oz)
  • 5 mL of toasted sesame oil (1 tsp)
  • 15 mL of light soysauce (1 tbsp)
  • 10 gm of potato starch (corn or tapioca starch is fine) (2 tsp)
  • 5 mL of Chinese cooking wine (optional) (1 tsp)
  • pinch of sugar
  • pinch of salt



1.) Chop the garlic chives roughly and put it in boiling water with 1 tsp of salt for about 2 minutes until they shrink.

2.) Drain it and squeeze all the excess moisture. It should shrink quite a lot in volume.

3.) Devein and peel the prawns. Gently dab it with paper towels to remove excess moisture.

4.) Combine all the ingredients for the filling in a bowl and stir to combine.

5.) Put it in the fridge to slightly set while making the wrappers.

1.) Combine the wheat starch, tapioca starch, salt and oil.

2.) Add the boiling water and combine.

3.) If the dough is very sticky, it is too wet, so add some more wheat starch. If it is not holding together, it needs more boiling water, so gradually add some in (tablespoon by tablespoon) until it comes together and forms a dough.
Assembly & Cooking:

1.) Divide the dough into 12-14 pieces and keep a moist papertowel or kitchen towel over them to prevent them from drying out.

2.) Roll the dough with a rolling pin or press it with the side of a knife into a circle with a diameter of at least 7.5 cm (3 inches).

3.) Add a 1 1/2 tsp of filling to the centre of the wrapper and gently fold the edges towards the centre.

4.) Squeeze the folded edges together enclosing it tightly. Make sure that there are no leaks or cracks.

5.) Heat the skillet to medium high heat with about 2 tbsp of oil. Allow the oil to heat up and then add in the dumplings. You can put them smooth side up or down, it does not really matter.

6.) Let them fry in the pan for 2 minutes, and then flip to the other side for another 2 minutes. They should be golden brown. It is important that it smokes a little bit, this will ensure that it will not stick to the pan.

7.) Add in about 250 mL (1 cup) of water to the pan and immediately close with a lid. This will steam the dumplings cooking the prawns on the inside and the wrapper skin.

8.) Do not remove the lid until almost all the liquid has evaporated and the skin of the dumplings become translucent. You can add some more water if it is still not translucent.

9.) Take of the lid and let them fry for another 1 minute on each side to crisp up.

10.) Let them cool and serve with a dipping sauce made with chili oil, soy sauce and sesame oil.


Tips and Advice:
  • It is very important that you do not put too much filling inside or else the dough will break and will not be able close tightly. When you fry it the filling will leak out and burn.
  • The texture of the raw dough should be soft but smooth. You'll know when it's right, it won't stick to the table or board.
  • Be sure to allow the dumplings to brown properly when you initially fry them, because they won't brown the same after they are steamed.
  • If you can't find Chinese garlic chives, use whatever chive you can find, and add 2 finely minced garlic cloves to the mixture instead.


  1. Wow! It looks so yummy.......

  2. timothy. this is quite impressive. i've been keeping up with your blog for months now. keep up the good work!

    how would you feel about substituting the white sugar with brown sugar? would that produce an equal result? my gut feeling tells me brown sugar might give more depth to the taste. browns are more sophisticated than whites.

  3. These looks amazing. I am so keen to try these as soon as possible. Very nice work!!


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