Pork Belly Dumplings with Crispy Lac
Recipe courtesy of Mei Lin

Pork Belly Dumplings with Crispy Lace

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 45 min
  • Active: 1 hr 45 min
  • Yield: 30 to 40 dumplings
The crispy lace on these juicy dumplings takes them to another level – you get the perfect chew from the dumplings and delightful crunch from the lace. I like using ground pork belly to make my dumplings, as it has a very nice fat ratio. Adding one egg white to the filling gives it a nice bounciness and don’t skip the soy sauce or chicken bouillon powder – they add a lot of umami and eliminate the need to add salt. Enjoy these as they are – you won’t even miss a dipping sauce.


Dumpling Filling: 



  1. For the dumpling filling: Mix together the pork belly, mushrooms, garlic chives, ginger and Shaoxing in a medium bowl. Add the cornstarch and egg white and mix to combine. Add the white pepper, chicken powder and 2 tablespoons of water and mix well. Toss the filling against the inside of the bowl a couple of times with your hands to create more bounciness. Add the sesame oil and soy sauce and give the mixture one last mix.
  2. At this point, I like to shape a little bit of the filling into a patty and fry it in a nonstick pan until cooked through in order to taste it and adjust the seasoning, if needed, before shaping the dumplings.
  3. Set a small bowl of water next to the dumpling wrappers. Hold a wrapper in the palm of your hand and add about 1 tablespoon of the filling to the center. Wet your finger and run it around the perimeter of the wrapper, then fold the wrapper over into a half-moon shape and pinch one of the ends together. Begin to fold pleats, one at a time, from the pinched end all the way to the other end, making sure to seal the wrapper over the filling with each pleat. When you get to the end, check the entire dumpling to make sure it's completely sealed. Repeat with the remining filling and wrappers. Cover the dumplings with a clean kitchen towel and set aside.
  4. For the lace: Mix together the cornstarch, flour, dashi, wheat starch and 4 cups water in a medium bowl until well combined.
  5. Heat a medium nonstick pan over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Add 7 to 8 dumplings to the pan in a circle and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes; do not flip the dumplings. Raise the heat to medium high and add 1/2 cup of the lace batter. Cover the pan with a lid to trap the steam and let cook until the lace batter has gelatinized, about 3 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook until the lace is crispy and the moisture has evaporated, 2 to 3 more minutes. Flip the dumplings with the lace onto a plate. Continue with the remaining dumplings and lace batter.