Sunday, March 2, 2014

Mom's Kitchen: Chinese Rice Dumpling Recipe + Wrapping Video

Jean has already shared delicious photos and her family recipe here for zongzi, so this post, admittedly, is a bit duplicative and more for documenting my Mom's methods than anything else.

Mom's Chinese Rice Dumplings

Prep Time: ~1 hour + marinate and soak overnight 

Cook Time: ~1.5 hours

Due to the number of pictures, please see rest of the recipe after the jump.

Ingredients: (10 dumplings)
  • 2 cups sticky rice (we use Mogami sweet rice)
  • 3/4 cup mung beans (w/o the skin)
  • Dried bamboo leaves - roughly 2 per dumpling, but soak a few extras in case your leaf gets torn
  • Chinese black mushrooms
  • A dash of cooking oil (any) and salt
  • (Optional) Garnish w/ soy sauce, Sriracha, and a dash of sesame oil
  • Pork Prep and Marinade
    • Lean, deboned pork cut into strips that run that length of your dumpling.  Many people will use fatty pork for the flavor, but I'm not a huge fan of the texture so typically use lean meats for all recipes.  
    • Water (enough to soak all your meat)
    • 1 tbsp minced garlic
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • 1/2 tbsp corn starch
    • 1/2 tbsp oil

Pork Prep 
  1. Mix your marinade ingredients together and toss in your pork
  2. Marinate overnight in the fridge
Rice / Mung Bean / Bamboo Leaf Prep
  1. In separate containers, soak each of the 3 items overnight in water
Dumpling Prep (the next day)
  1. Drain the rice / mung beans of water
  2. Add a dash of oil and salt to your rice and mung beans.  The oil prevents the rice from sticking to the leaf and the salt gives it a little extra flavor.  If you are using fatty pork, you can omit the oil addition.
  3. Rinse your bamboo leaves and very lightly scrub the top of each leaf
  4. Fold a bamboo leaf (see photos and video below for steps 4-7)
  5. Spoon the ingredients into your leaves
  6. Fold and secure your dumplings with string
  7. Boil for ~1.5 hours
Draining the rice and mung beans

Chinese Black Mushrooms and Marinated Pork

Fold leaf in half and overlap the edges of the bottom (see video below)

In sequence, add 2 tbsp of rice, 1 tbsp mung beans, 1 strip of pork, 1 mushroom to your bamboo leaf

To make sure your dumpling doesn't burst, wrap a second leaf around it and then add an additional tbsp of rice over top.

Fold the second leaf over and then fold the top down. Wrap with string to secure your dumpling and knot the ends.

See Mom wrap her dumplings in the video below:

Boil your dumplings for ~1.5 hours and serve.  They also freeze well!



Happy eating!  :)


  1. oh man I love this stuff!! dumplings are soo good!

    1. Me too! Definitely one of my favorite dishes :)

  2. the last finished pictures are making me so hungry! I'm definitely bookmarking this to try!

  3. awww thanks for sharing this! my grandma used to make this when she was alive. mb i can have Tim help me replicate this. btw i been meaning to pm u and see when u're avail to meet up with me and K!

    1. It'd be a fun project for you and Tim - let me know how it goes! And you know I'm always up to go eating :)

  4. This looks delicious. I need to figure out how to make this vegetarian. =)

    1. Thank you! Maybe try it with more rice / mung beans / mushrooms to fill in the meat space? Or if you eat the Chinese salted eggs, you could add the egg yolk to the middle too :)

  5. Thanks for including the video. The still photos aren't as easy to follow when trying to wrap these things :).

  6. Thanks for this awesome easy recipe and VIDEO! I added peanuts and Chinese sausage to mine. Your mom has a touch that makes all food taste so good. Mine didn't turn out as delicious as hers, but none the less it was still good. I will be sharing some with Heidi, hopefully it will pass the Heidi test.


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