Thai-Style Steamed Dumplings

with Coriander Dipping Sauce


For the filling:

  • 1/4 cup minced scallion
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 red bell pepper minced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2/3 cup minced cabbage
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh coriander
  • 1 large egg beaten lightly
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 60 shao mai wrappers round wrappers, see note, thawed, if frozen
  • Cornstarch for dusting the baking sheet

For the sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon nam pla see cook’s note
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon shredded fresh mint leaves
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Coriander sprigs for garnish


Make the filling:

  • In a bowl, combine well the scallion, the pork, the ginger, the bell pepper, the cabbage, the garlic, the oil, the soy sauce, the coriander, the egg, and salt and pepper, to taste, and chill the filling for at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Put about 1 heaping teaspoon of the filling in the center of 1 of the wrappers and moisten the edge of the wrapper. Gather the edge of the wrapper up and around the filling and form a waist with the wrapper, pushing the dumpling from the bottom and keeping the filling level with the top of the wrapper. (The filling should not be enclosed.) Continue to make dumplings with the remaining wrappers and filling in the same manner and arrange them in 1 layer on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper dusted lightly with the cornstarch. (The dumplings may be prepared up to this point 8 hours in advance and kept uncovered and chilled or 1 month in advance and kept covered tightly and frozen. If the dumplings are frozen, do not thaw them in advance.)
  • In a large non-stick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over high heat until it is hot but not smoking and in it fry half the dumplings, flat sides down, over moderately high heat for 1 minute, or until the undersides are golden. Add 1/2 cup water and steam the dumplings, covered, over moderate heat for 3 minutes, or until the pork is cooked through. (If using frozen dumplings, fry them, frozen, for 1 minute, or until the undersides are golden, and steam them, adding 3/4 cup water per batch, covered, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the pork is cooked through.) Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the skillet and cook the remaining dumplings in the same manner. Garnish the dumplings with the coriander sprigs and serve them with the sauce.

Make the sauce:

  • In a bowl whisk together the nam pla, the lime juice, the vinegar, the sugar, the gingerroot, the mint, the coriander, salt and pepper, to taste.


Nam Pla is available at Oriental and Southeast Asian markets, specialty foods shops, and many supermarkets.
Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Difficulty: Medium