Chinese Takeout Online Cooking Class

PRE-CLASS MISE EN PLACE AND NOTES

CHINESE TAKEOUT

Please gather all ingredients prior to class if you will be cooking along. Wash and dry all produce. It is helpful to organize the ingredients by recipe on rimmed baking sheets. Feel free to pre-measure ingredients, but it is not necessary.


All Recipes

Have all produce washed and dried. No other prep is needed for this class.

Ingredient Shopping List

Below is a list of ingredients you’ll need to make the recipes in this packet. Please reach out for substitution suggestions.

Proteins

☐ Ground pork
☐ Chicken thighs


Produce

☐ 4-inch piece fresh ginger root
☐ 1 head green cabbage
☐ 6 garlic cloves
☐ 1 bunch chives or green onions
☐ 1 yellow onion
☐ 1 red bell pepper
☐ 1 bunch Chinese broccoli (substitue with broccolini or broccoli)


Dairy

☐ 1 egg white


Pantry Items

☐ Soy sauce
☐ Kosher or sea salt
☐ Rice vinegar
☐ Granulated sugar
☐ Toasted sesame oil
☐ Hoisin sauce
☐ Shaoxing rice wine
☐ Vegetable oil
☐ Chicken broth (or substitute with water)
☐ Brown sugar
☐ Chinese black vinegar (or substitute with rice vinegar)
☐ Red chile flakes
☐ Oyster sauce


Other

☐ Shanghai-style 3.5-inch round dumpling wrappers (see recipe notes for substitutions)
☐ Chinese-style egg noodles (see recipe notes for substitutions)

Equipment Needed

Below is a list of tools you’ll need to make the recipes in this packet.

Cutlery

☐ Chef’s knife
☐ Paring knife
☐ 2 Cutting boards


Hand Tools/Gadgets

☐ Mixing bowls
☐ Measuring cups
☐ Measuring spoons
☐ Spatulas
☐ Colander
☐ Tongs
☐ Bench scraper


Cookware

☐ Small skillet
☐ Bamboo steamer (see alternatives in recipe notes)
☐ Wok or large skillet
☐ Large saucepan


Bakeware

☐ Rimmed baking sheet


Tabletop

☐ Dipping bowls


Other

☐ Clean kitchen towels
☐ Parchment paper


PORK AND CHIVE DUMPLINGS WITH SESAME-SOY DIPPING SAUCE

Yield: about 30 dumplings

These steamed dumplings capture the classic flavors of Chinese cuisine in one delicious bite. The dumplings can be assembled and frozen in an airtight container for up to 1 month. If you like your food spicy, add a little Chinese hot chili paste to the dipping sauce.


Dumplings: 1/2 pound ground pork 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced 1/2 cup green cabbage, minced 1 garlic clove, minced 1/2 cup fresh chives, thinly sliced 2 tablespoons soy sauce 1 large egg white 1 teaspoon sea salt 1 package (3-inch round) “Shanghai style” dumpling wrappers
Sesame-soy dipping sauce: 2 tablespoons soy sauce 2 tablespoons rice vinegar 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced 1 teaspoon granulated sugar 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil 1 tablespoon fresh chives, thinly sliced Cabbage leaves or parchment paper with holes poked into it and cut into the shape of your steaming baskets, for lining steamers.


  1. To prepare filling: To a medium mixing bowl, add pork, ginger, cabbage, garlic, chives, soy sauce, egg white and salt; use a spatula to thoroughly combine. To test seasoning, cook a teaspoon of the filling in a small skillet until cooked through. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

  2. To assemble dumplings:Lay 1 wrapper on a clean work surface and place a teaspoon of filling just below the center of the wrapper. Using a small pastry brush or a fingertip, brush a thin film of cold water around the edge of the wrapper. Fold the wrapped in half over the filling and pinch it shut just at the midpoint. Pleat one open side toward the center using 3 pleats to close. Repeat on the other side, aiming the pleats toward the middle of the wrapper opening. Place assembled dumpling, pleated side up, on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover dumpling with a clean kitchen towel to prevent drying. Repeat with the remaining filling and wrappers.

  3. To prepare sauce: In a small bowl, whisk the sauce ingredients to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

  4. To cook dumplings:Pour water into a wok or large saucepan to a depth of 3 inches and heat over medium-high to a strong simmer. Line the steamers with cabbage leaves or oiled sheets of parchment paper. Arrange dumplings in steamers at least 1/2 inch apart. Stack bamboo steamers in the work or place a steamer insert into the pan. Steamers should not touch the surface of the water. Cover steamers and steam dumplings until filling is cooked through and wrappers are translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove dumplings from steamer.

  5. To serve: Serve from bamboo steaming baskets or transfer to a large, warmed platter and serve immediately with dipping sauce on the side.

Pork and Chive Dumplings with Sesame-Soy Dipping Sauce Notes: Shanghai-style wrappers are round and about 3.5-inches in diameter. If you cannot find those, look for dumpling wrappers, dumpling skins, gyoza wrappers or potsicker wrappers. If none can be found, steamed green cabbage or collard green leaves can be used.

Dumpling wrappers are stocked in the refrigerator section of most grocery stores, often near the tofu.

No bamboo steamer? Here are some options: A large pot with a pasta insert, steamer basket or steamer insert.

Grab a large pot with a lid, aluminum foil or ceramic ramekin, and a plate that fits in the pot with enough space around it to pick it up with hot pads, and follow these instructions:
  1. Make three large balls of aluminum foil. They don’t have to be tightly packed, but they should be about the same size (small baseball or tennis ball). Don’t worry about this step if using a ramekin.
  2. Place the balls in the bottom of the pot and lay a ceramic plate on top; press to make sure it’s fairly level. Remove plate. If using a ramekin, place in the center of the bottom of pot.
  3. Add enough water to the pot to come up a few inches high, but not covering the aluminum balls. Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer. If using a ramekin, add some water to the ramekin so it doesn’t float.
  4. Carefully rub a little sesame oil or vegetable oil onto plate, then arrange dumplings on top. Plate should be full, but dumplings should have about ½ inch between them.
  5. Carefully lower the plate onto the foil balls, then cover pot with lid. Steam 7-9 minutes.





GINGER CHICKEN AND SCALLION LO MEIN

Yield: 4 servings

Fresh Chinese egg noodles are found in the Asian section of most grocery stores. The noodles are yellow in color and made from wheat flour and eggs. Check the label to ensure real eggs are listed in the ingredients as some manufacturers dye the noodles to save cost. In a pinch, you can substitute dry spaghetti pasta.


1 tablespoon sea salt
1/2 pound fresh Chinese-style egg noodles
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, plus more for finishing
12 ounces skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1/4-inch-thick by 1-inch-long pieces
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon Shaoxing rice wine
2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil, divided
1/2 yellow onion, thinly sliced
2 cups broccoli florets, cut into bite-size pieces
1 red bell pepper, cored and cut into strips
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1/4 cup green onion, thinly sliced, plus extra for garnishing (green parts only)
1/3 cup low-sodium chicken broth or water
2 tablespoons Chinese black vinegar


  1. To prepare noodles: To a large saucepan set over medium-high heat add water and salt; bring to a boil. Add the egg noodles, stir well and cook according to package instructions. Drain noodles in a colander; rinse under cool running water, tossing until all excess liquid has been removed. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with sesame oil; set aside.
  2. To a medium bowl, add chicken, soy sauce, hoisin and wine; toss to coat and set aside. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Place a wok over a stovetop set to high. Heat until wok begins to smoke, then add 1 tablespoon peanut oil and swirl to coat. Add onion and cook; stirring and tossing occasionally until slightly browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Add broccoli and bell pepper and cook, stirring and tossing occasionally until the broccoli is barely tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Add garlic, ginger and green onion; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Transfer the vegetables to the bowl with the noodles.
  4. Return the wok to high heat until it begins to smoke. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon peanut oil and swirl to coat the sides. Drain the chicken, reserving the sauce, and add the meat to the wok. Cook, stirring and tossing for 2 minutes. Add reserved sauce, chicken broth and vinegar; stir. Add the reserved noodles and vegetables. Toss until noodles are coated and the chicken is cooked through.
  5. To serve: Transfer to a serving dish, drizzle lightly with sesame oil, garnish with green onions and serve family-style.


Ginger Chicken and Scallion Lo Mein variations:
Dried spaghetti pasta or rice noodles can be substituted for lo mein noodles. They aren’t authentic, or traditional, but they’ll do in a pinch. Rice vinegar, white wine vinegar, or distilled white vinegar can be substituted for the black vinegar.



CHINESE BROCCOLI WITH GARLIC

Yield: 4 servings

Chinese broccoli (gai-lan) is from the same family as broccoli and kale. When raw, the flavor is strong and bitter, so be sure to always blanch or cook before eating.


1 bunch (10 ounces) Chinese broccoli, trimmed, stalks and leaves separated
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon red chile flakes
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil


  1. To a wok set over high heat add enough water to come up 1 inch; bring to a boil. Add broccoli stalks to the wok and add leaves on top of the stalks. Cover and steam until stalks are tender when pierced with a fork, about 3 minutes. Drain broccoli well and set aside.
  2. Wipe wok dry and return oven to medium heat; add oil. Once oil is hot and shimmering, add garlic, ginger and chili flakes; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add hoisin, oyster sauce, soy sauce and water; simmer until thickened. Return broccoli to wok and add sesame oil; toss to coat.
  3. Transfer to a platter and serve.

Chinese Broccoli with Garlic variations: Conventional broccoli, baby broccoli, broccoli rabe or baby bok choy would be great substitutions for Chinese broccoli. A large skillet can be used if you don’t have a wok.



Chinese Cooking: Ingredients Glossary



Black bean sauce: This salty brown sauce is made from fermented soybeans and is available in cans or jars. If you buy it in a can, transfer it to a jar. It can then be stored indefinitely in the refrigerator.

Black vinegar: An inky-black vinegar made from rice and aged with a rich, mellow, malty, woody and smoky flavor. It was first popularized in East Asia, particularly southern China.

Celery: Chinese celery is much longer and thinner than the domestic variety. It is more aromatic and is worth seeking out for the distinctive flavor it gives soups and stir-fries.

Chinese black mushrooms: Dried mushrooms found in Asian grocery stores. The name is a bit of a misnomer, since Chinese black mushrooms can be light brown, dark brown and gray. Black mushrooms range in price from moderate to quite expensive. The more costly mushrooms are often called "flower mushrooms" as they have a thick cap and nice curl. However, the less expensive varieties are perfectly acceptable for use in soups and stir-fries. Hydrate mushrooms in hot water at least 15 minutes before using in stir-fries.

Chinese chili bean sauce (Doubanjiang): A spicy, salty sauce that is made from fermented soybeans and hot chilies, used particularly in Sichuan cooking.

Dark soy sauce: Darker in color and thicker in texture than standard soy sauce, but it tends to be less salty. It is generally fermented for a longer period of time than thin counterparts and often has added sugar or molasses, giving it a sweet-salty flavor and viscous texture.

White pepper: White pepper is widely used in Chinese cooking and is derived from the processed black peppercorn; the outer layer is removed before or after drying, leaving only the inner seed. White pepper tastes hotter and has more of a pungent smell than black pepper, but a less complex flavor.

Yard-long bean: A thin legume from China that can grow up to three feet in length; substitute regular green beans.

WHAT TO EXPECT
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Each 90-120 minute class is a password-protected Zoom session, so you and the other attendees are free to ask questions as you follow along step by step.

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A LITTLE HOMEWORK

Prior to your class, download the prep packet for a shopping list and quickstart instructions so you’re ready to jump right in.