My gyoza ingredients:
|4-500g ground chicken or pork||I like my gyoza a little meaty. Pork is the usual, but I can get ground chicken easier at my local supermarket.|
|1/4 head of cabbage||Might have to buy more, but I can get it in quarter chunks.|
|Nira - one bunch||Looks like tall grass.|
|Negi - one bunch||Looks like tall grass with a thick white base.|
|Half an onion||Regular onion|
|A few garlic things||I think a clove is the whole thing with several smaller pieces. I use a few smaller pieces.|
|Gyoza wrappers||Called gyoza-kawa in Japanese.|
|Seasoning of choice||I use Italian herbs, salt, and pepper.|
|Gomayu||Like a peanut oil.|
|Frying pan with cover.|
|A good food processor would be a bonus as well.
First cut the negi and nira so the nasty base is gone and the tips of the top are gone. You just want the main parts of them. Either chop them up into small pieces, like half a fingernail or shove it all in the food processor. Then chop the cabbage up into small parts. Don't use the thick part of the base or the outer edges. Then put in half (or more) of the onion or chop it by hand.
Now mix in the meat and the seasonings. I add just a few hearty shakes of each. Now mix in some gomayu. I just let it chug chug for a few seconds. You just want the sauce to mix with all the other stuff and make it mushier. Apparently mushier is a word. Now mix this brain-matter looking mixture around with your bare hands and squeeze it to make sure it's all mixed. Remove any long pieces of the grassy stuff that managed to escape the executioner's blade.
Now is the tricky part. Take a gyoza wrapper and hold it in your left hand (if you are right handed. My wrappers are pre-floured which is good, as we will see soon. Take a spoon and take out a small portion of the mixture. You'll have to experiment with this, but I like to use a little more than seems to fit. Then dip your finger in a small bowl of water and moisten the bottom lip of the gyoza wrapper. Fold the gyoza over and seal it. You might have to push the matter down with your right finger. Then seal it up.
Some people go to great lengths to fold over the edges and make an overlapping ridge of sorts, but the pre-floured wrappers don't need that and who cares how it looks. My wrappers come in packs of 20-25 so I make at least that many and sometimes use two packages. The above recipe will make at least two packs filled pretty fat.
So now you have them all folded. Take a flat cooking pan and use olive oil to cover the bottom. You don't want it thin nor do you want them floating. Just covered. Move the pan around so it's balanced. Then place them all in there so they are touching each other and go around the edge. If you have more they can fill in the middle. Have the stove already heated. I use gas and have it about medium heat. Drop the pan on the stove and let it get to the point where they are starting to crackle and pop. Just a few minutes. Now put the lid on the pan and pour in about 1 cup of water. Of course you would move the lid back a bit before pouring in the water. Turn the heat up a tad, but not to full.
Let that cook for a while. I usually sacrifice one or two in the middle to check their done-ness. Wait until they are starting to turn golden brown. It's maybe 10 minutes or less. Most of the water will have boiled away. Then pull them off the heat and remove the cover. Professional gyoza places now use a wooden circle with a handle to drain the remaining liquid. Next, and this takes a little practice, put a plate face down onto the gyoza, then flip the pan over so the gyoza are all now on the plate. The final product should look like this:
To eat them use chopsticks to dip them in a mixture of soy sauce, vinegar, some kind of red hot sauce, and some salt. You have to mix those to your own preferences. I like it a bit vingeary and hot.
I'll add photos of each step next time I make them.