Friday, January 12, 2007

A new experiment: XLBs

Well, just dumplings for now. Apparently, pork skin is needed to create a stock that is gelatinous enough for those delicious, juicy pork dumplings. If you can believe it, we don’t actually stock pork skin all the time. Go figure. So, since I have the urge right now, and lack the skin, I guess I will just have to experiment.
We have a bunch of frozen scrimps. I am sure that they use shrimp in dumplings somewhere, so let’s give it a shot. I know they make shrimp and pork dumlings, and shao mai have shrimps right? Good enough for me.
The plan of attack at the moment: I still have a few dumpling wrappers left over from yesterday (and of course I forgot to take pictures of the process, or the product.) I guess I will need to make some more wrappers anyway, because I have only a few, and it is so easy. The day old wrappers work just fine however. Just dust with flour and store in the fridge. Always let dough come to room temp before working with it again.
The filing: (Remember that this is not the XLB filing. That one will probably be worked on this weekend. Unless, of course we go to Vegas.)
Trying to keep it very simple, this one is just some raw shrimp, diced finely, green onions and ginger. Mixed with a bit of Soy sauce and sugar, that was it. Into the wrappers and over the steam. Nothing to it.

Unfortunately, this one turned out a bit salty and, well just not so great. Of course, I sent a couple of pics of these to the wife and she made me make more when she got home. These turned out much better.

Into the second batch went; carrots, celery, ginger and yellow onions (we had by now run out of green.) all of these shredded. Shrimps of course, finely diced, and soy, sugar, sesame oil and pepper. That is it, all mixed up and into the wrappers.

I have seen the dumplings being made at DTF and there is quite a bit of technical and even artistic skill that seems to go into it. (Of course at DTF it is more technical as that place is more like an assembly line) Anyway, I possess neither of these skills, so I had to cheat a bit. I just laid a wrapper over my hand. Touching pointer to thumb, lay the wrapper over the circle made and place filing into the indentation made. Once the filing is in the center, push it through and just twist the excess wrapper on top together. I tore off and discarded the extra wrapper. That was it. Steam and eat. Enjoy.

Such a tease, I know. Here is a shot of them in the steamer. Looks like Vegas tomorrow, so no XLBs until probably next weekend. Hope this one will keep you going until then. Even though it isn't juicy pork just yet, I bet even these will make you all consider the offer below a bit more seriously.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


What? OK, so here is the situation. The wife and I have become over the past few weeks (mostly her) a little bit obsessed with poker. We watch on the idiot box, play online and even drive out to Vegas at 11:30 on a Friday night just to get our fill. The thing is, we would really like to find some other interested parties to get together on a regular basis and play.
Two major obstacles.
1. We just moved here not too long ago and neither of us are really all that socially outgoing. In other words, we don't know too many people here. Not that we are socially inept or akward (though the Tourret's does make a few uncomfortable) just that we don't really get out much.

2. We live in a tiny little studio. This would make it difficult, even if we did have friends, to have anyone over. So here is what we offer, the reason for the post, and an explanation of the title:
Food Blogger Poker Pot Luck!
We have the chips, cards, everything necessary for the game. Well, except for the people and the space. So this is where all of you come in. We are hoping that at least a few of you food bloggers out there also have an interest in poker (we already know you like food.) So if someone is willing to host, and everyone would bring a dish to share, or some wine or whatever, there you go. Just like a normal pot luck but with a friendly (or not so much) card game.

I know this is not quite a food related post. I better add some porn pics just to be safe. Cheers!