Karena Armstrong

The Zen of Dumplings

In the hectic modern life these time consuming parcels of pure joy are a welcome relief. The repetitive nature of rolling and folding become meditative, in the moment, mindful if you like. 

You can sit and roll with people you love, you will get wonky, perfect and odd shaped dumplings, but that is part of the practice. 

Buy yourself a dumpling rolling pin. They are a big help. 

When buying ingredients, purchase the best you can, it makes such a difference. Australian caught and processed seafood is far superior in taste. For soy and oyster sauce I always buy Mega Chef brand, gluten free and no MSG, and they have great flavour. Find pure sesame oil not a blend and cold pressed Peanut oil. 

Be warned you may become obsessed, those parcels of intensified flavour become very addictive. Enjoy cooking and take your time.


Makes 20 Dumplings with room for error 

Textural Skin – Can be steamed or boiled 

  • 160gms potato starch 
  • 80g medium wheat flour 
  • 330ml hot water 
  • 10gms oil 
  • 6gms salt 

Combine the potato starch and wheat flour. Add the boiling water slowly and knead well to form a dough Allow the dough to cool and then knead in the oil and salt. Wrap in cling film until required. To roll divide the dough into 2. Roll into a sausage and cut into 10. Roll each into circles. A little oil on hands can help. Cover rolled wrappers with a damp tea towel. When ready roll into dumplings and steam for 6 minutes. 

Filling Savannah Farm Pork and Dried Mushrooms 

  • 100gms minced pork 
  • 15gms ginger, finely grated 
  • 10gms dried mushrooms or 50g sautéed/simmered fresh 
  • 4 stems spring onions finely sliced 
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • 2 tbsp hoi sin 
  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce 
  • ¼ tsp ground white pepper 

Place the pork into a large mixing bowl Soak the mushrooms in boiling water, simmer for 20minutes, drain and dry. Finely dice the cooked mushrooms. Add the sugar, hoi sin, pepper, spring onions and oyster sauce with the finely grated ginger and mushrooms to the pork. With clean hands beat until the mix is very sticky. Chill until required. 

Pickled Ginger Garnish 

  • Ginger Finely Sliced 
  • Sichuan Salt 
  • Chinese Red Vinegar 
  • Extra virgin olive oil 
  • Fresh coriander
Delicate Skin-best steamed 

Makes 20 Dumplings with room for mistakes 

  • 90gms medium gluten flour wheat 
  • 105gms potato starch 
  • 200mls boiling water 
  • 4gms salt 
  • 5gms vegetable oil 

Slowly pour the boiling water over the potato starch and flour with the salt. Knead until very smooth. Add the oil and continue to knead. Rest the smooth ball of dough for 15 minutes. Roll into 2 long sausages. Cut into 10 small rounds per sausage. Flatten into rounds. Fold into dumplings using water to seal. Steam in baskets for 6 minutes. 


  • 200gms Australian scallop meat or 1 medium scallop per dumpling/large cut in half 
  • ½ bunch garlic chives 
  • 25g minced ginger 

Clean the scallops and place in a mixing bowl. Finely slice the garlic chives and add to the bowl with the ginger. Chill the scallops until required. 

Roasted Chili Oil Dressing 

  • 100mls roasted chili oil 
  • 50mls lime juice 
  • 50ml Chinese red vinegar 
  • 1 tbsp sugar 
  • 30ml oyster sauce 
  • 30mls soy 
  • 20mls sesame oil 
  • 20mls virgin olive oil 

Mix all ingredients.

Pan Fried or Boiling Dumplings (these can be bought from China Town) 

Makes 20 with you guessed it –room for mistakes 

  • 225g wheat flour 
  • 4gms salt 
  • 200ml water approximately 
  • Peanut oil for frying 
  • Extra potato starch for frying 

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl, slowly adding the water until you have a smooth dough. Wrap and rest before use. Roll into 2 long sausages. Cut 10 rounds from each. Roll each round and cover with a damp tea towel until needed. Roll and fill. 

Pan fry until golden on the base-3 minutes. Add 100ml water and cover for 4 minutes on a low heat Mix 2 tablespoons of potato starch with enough water to make a smooth slurry. Pour around the dumpling to form a pancake. Cook until golden. Flip onto a plate. Pour over soy dressing. 

Prawn and Garlic Chive Pot Sticker Dumplings 

  • 200gms Australian prawn meat 
  • 15gms ginger-finely grated 
  • 1/4 bunch coriander 
  • Pinch white pepper 
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • 1 bunch garlic chives or ½ bunch spring onions 
  • 15ml soy 
  • 15ml oyster sauce 
  • 5ml sesame oil 

Finely dice the prawn meat and place into a large bowl. Wash coriander and spring onions. Finely slice and add to the prawns. Add the sauces and seasonings and mix well. Chill until use. 

Soy Dressing 

  • 30g ginger finely grated 
  • 200ml soy 
  • 50ml lime juice 
  • 30ml virgin oil 
  • 30ml Chinese black vinegar 

Mix all ingredients

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