Saturday, April 25, 2015

Bánh Bột Lọc Trần (The Naked Transparent Dumplings!) :-)

I had a few failed attempts at making this dumplings because I over-complicated the process by making the dough using the bread machine.  The dough became gluey and I couldn't make anything with it.

So keep it simple, mix it with a wooden spoon at first, then by hand later.  It should take less than 5 minutes for the dough to come together.

400-g tapioca starch
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/3 cup boiling water.

Put all the tapioca in a bowl.  Add 1/3 cup of boiling water at a time.  Mix with wooden spoon. Continue adding boiling water 3 more times.  By the 4th time, dough should come together with the "right" consistency (i.e. not sticky to hand, pliable, rollable, etc.)

Filling (using the same filling for Bánh Ít Ram)
3/4 lb pork belly, cut into small cubes
1 lb peeled shrimp, cut into small cubes
3 shallots, minced
2 Tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp black pepper (or more)
2 tsp mushroom seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp powdered annatto (optional.  Or 1 Tbsp annatto seeds fried quickly in hot oil to color the oil)

Bánh Ít Ram

Dough Ingredients:
16-oz (one bag) glutinous rice flour
1 tsp mushroom seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1-2/3 cup hot water

Mix all ingredients together to make dough.  I used about 30g of dough for each dumpling.
Use the filling recipe above.  Puree the leftover filling and saute until dry.  Use as topping.  (That's because I was too lazy to make a shrimp topping separately).

Steam for 5-7 (or was it 7-10) minutes.

Use banana leaves, brushed with oil, as dumpling liners.  I used wax paper once and the flour on the bottom was still raw because steam can't cook through was paper (?).  Also, it was super sticky, so I ended up pan-frying the dumplings after steaming.  They were super delicious that way.