Gogi Mandu 고기만두 (Meat-Filled Dumplings) with Chicken, Ginger and Carrots
Mandu (MAHNdoo) is a nonspecific word for Korean dumplings filled with any mixture of meat, tofu, seafood and/or vegetables. Gogi mandu have meat as their primary filling ingredient. Some varieties even contain dangmyeon (sweet potato starch glass noodles). A departure from traditional pork, beef or kimchi fillings, these gingery chicken- and carrot-filled mandu taste much lighter and brighter and are perfect for spring or summer. Double the dipping sauce if you like to dip your mandu twice, or if you want extra to spoon over vegetable side dishes.
- Dipping Sauce
.25 C soy sauce
1 T rice vinegar
1 t granulated sugar
.5 t toasted sesame oil
1 clove garlic, minced
pinch gochugaru flakes or other seedless crushed red pepper flakes
- Mandu Filling
2 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs, minced (packaged ground chicken will work too)
1.5 C minced carrots
.25 C minced fresh ginger
.25 C minced red sweet pepper
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 T soy sauce
.75 t ground black pepper
1 t fine sea salt
1 t toasted sesame oil
2 T sesame seeds
- For Assembly
2 packages round dumpling wrappers at room temperature, approximately 80 total (we usually use Twin Marquis Shanghai Style brand wrappers, available at Chinese markets and often at Wegmans)
cornstarch for dusting trays, approximately .5 C
neutral oil suitable for pan frying, approximately 6 T, preferably in a squeeze bottle or other quick-dispensing bottle
water for pan frying, approximately 1 cup
sliced scallions, sesame seeds, fried garlic, chili oil or chili crisp as optional garnish
- Combine all sauce ingredients in a small dish or jar, cover and set aside.
- In medium bowl, combine all filling ingredients and mix well.
- Taste test the filling: Heat a large stainless steel or nonstick frying pan on medium high, add a teaspoon of neutral oil, and fry about a teaspoon of filling, flipping once. Remove pan from heat, let cooked filling cool a bit, taste it, and correct seasoning in remaining filling if needed.
- Wrapping the Mandu: Pleated Version (See Notes)
- Sprinkle two sheet pans liberally with cornstarch. Set out two small spoons, a small cutting board or mat and a small bowl of water. Have your filling ready. Open one package of wrappers, keeping them loosely covered with the plastic wrap to prevent them from drying out.
- Lay one wrapper on the cutting board or mat and place a heaping teaspoon of filling in the center of the wrapper. Dip a fingertip or two in the bowl of water and quickly run damp fingertips along the outer edge of the wrapper, creating a half-inch border along the circumference.
- Fold the mandu wrapper in half but do not press the edges together. Pinch the left side of the wrapper, forming a corner. Near this corner, pinch the front edge of the wrapper to form a pleat. Press the pleat against the back wrapper, lining up edges, and press to seal. The back of the mandu will remain smooth; only the front will be pleated.
- Continue pleating and pinching the front of the wrapper until the mandu is sealed shut. Pinch the edge once more to ensure a good seal, then set your wrapped mandu on the prepared tray. Be sure the mandu has cornstarch under it so it doesn’t stick to the pan. Repeat. Ensure the mandu are not touching on the tray or they will stick together.
- When one tray is filled, cover the wrapped mandu with a damp tea towel or paper towel so they don’t dry out.
- At this step the mandu may be frozen. See Notes for more details.
- Pan Frying the Mandu
- Gather heat-proof tongs, cooking oil, .25 C water in a measuring cup, and two large plates or bowls for your finished mandu. Heat a large, lidded stainless or nonstick skillet or saute pan over medium high heat.
- Reduce heat to medium. Add 1-2 T neutral oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Quickly add wrapped mandu to the hot pan, standing upright. Pack the pan full while ensuring that the mandu do not touch each other. It’s ok if there is some cornstarch on the bottom of the mandu; this will give it a crispy bottom and help prevent it from sticking to the pan.
- Cook the mandu 1-2 minutes or until the bottoms are lightly browned. With pan lid in one hand, carefully pour the .25 C water into the pan and swiftly cover the pan to trap steam. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 8-10 minutes.
- After 8-10 minutes, turn off heat and shake the pan gently without removing the lid so the condensation collected inside the lid falls into the pan. (This minimizes the risk of both stuck mandu and a steam burn.) When sizzling slows, uncover the pan and remove cooked mandu to serving bowl or platter. Mandu should be glossy with dark brown, blistered bottoms. Repeat with remaining mandu.
- To Serve
- Serve cooked mandu plain, or sprinkle with sliced scallions, sesame seeds, fried garlic, chili oil and/or chili crisp. Serve dipping sauce on the side.
- Feel free to wrap them more simply by folding the dampened, filled wrappers into half-moon shapes, pinching to seal. You can also try folding them into half-moons and then pinching pleats into the thick doubled edge. I like to pleat only one side as the filling fits better due to the pocket formed by the pleats and allows the mandu to stand better in the pan, but the pleated method definitely takes a bit longer. Don’t stress about getting it just right. As long as the edge is firmly sealed, it will all taste good in the end.
- Other cooking methods:
Steamed: Steam mandu in lined bamboo steamer for 10 minutes, or 12 minutes if frozen.
Deep Fried: Heat 3 inches of neutral oil suitable for deep frying to 350°F in skillet or deep fryer. Fry 2-3 minutes until golden. Frozen mandu may take up to 2 minutes longer to cook thoroughly.
Boiled: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add mandu, stirring gently to prevent sticking, and cook until they float to the surface. Cook two minutes more and then remove with a spider or other slotted utensil, draining well.
- Freezing mandu: Freeze mandu right on the tray for an hour or two and then transfer frozen mandu to a zip-top bag. Frozen mandu are best steamed, boiled or deep-fried rather than pan-fried.
- Leftover wrappers: Fry and use as mini tostadas, or crumble over salads and soups. Use to make raviolo. Cut in strips and add to boiling broth as noodles.
Leftover filing: Form small meatballs and add to soup, or pan-fry as patties.