Japanese Gyoza (Meat Dumplings)



If when you think of Japan, the first things that pop into your head are, in order, the soccer fields of "Captain Tsubasa," the volleyball face-offs featuring "Attack No. 1," and the contestants of "Takeshi's Castle," it's definitely time to shift your perspective. The first step? Try your hand at making these delicious meat dumplings known as Gyoza in Japan! Yes, we know: you've seen them countless times peeking out from bento boxes in the anime of your youth, but we're fully intent on breaking away from your cartoon memories and diving into a different Rising Sun: one of zen calmness, skill, and patience. Embracing Japanese cuisine isn't just about exploring new flavors, delicately scented with soy sauce, garlic, and rice vinegar; it's somewhat like embarking on a journey of self-discovery. At least for a few minutes, as you press the edges together to seal your dumplings, anticipating the crunch of your Gyoza's crust and sinking into the soft meat filling, you'll be enveloped in a golden serenity. Just like Master Shifu!

Try these variations as well:

  • Vegetarian Gyoza
  • Cacio e pepe Gyoza
  • Steamed Chinese Dumplings


Ingredients for the dough (for 16 Gyoza)
Water 3 oz (90 g) - (hot syrup)
Flour 00 1 ½ cup (200 g)
Salt 1 pinch
For the filling
Pork 0.9 lb (400 g) - ground
Fresh scallion ½ cup (60 g)
Chickory 1.75 oz (50 g)
Garlic 1 clove
Soy sauce 1.4 tbsp (20 g)
Egg yolks 1
For cooking
Vegetable oil 2 tsp (10 g)
Water 4 tsp (20 g)
For the sauce
Soy sauce 4 tsp (20 g)
Fresh ginger 1 tsp
Tabasco® 4 drops

How to prepare Japanese Gyoza (Meat Dumplings)

To prepare your Japanese gyoza, start with the filling. Clean the green onion, removing the ends and the outermost leaves 1 and roughly chop it. Chop the chicory in the same way, into large pieces 2, then place the ground meat in the blender together with the chopped green onion 3,

the chicory 4, the soy sauce 5, the garlic (crushed with a garlic press or finely chopped with a knife) 6

and also add an egg yolk 7 to ensure the filling holds together. Blend thoroughly, then transfer the mixture to a baking dish 8, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside. Now move on to preparing the dough for the wrappers. Place the flour and salt 9 in the blender.

Then pour the hot water in a thin stream 10, activate the blades and, as soon as the dough starts to come together and begins to form a ball 11, remove it from the blades and transfer it to the work surface. Give it a quick knead 12

to form a ball 13. Place it in a bowl, cover it with plastic wrap 14 and let it rest for at least half an hour. After the resting time, take the dough out and transfer it to a lightly floured work surface. Form a log 15.

Then, using a dough scraper, divide the log into 16 pieces 16 and work them to form as many balls 17. Meanwhile, keep the other balls covered with plastic wrap to prevent them from drying out, take a rolling pin and roll out each ball into a wrapper about 1/16 to 1/8 of inch thick 18.

Then, to give your dumplings a regular shape, cut each wrapper with a 3 1/2 inches diameter pastry cutter 19 and remove the excess outer edges of the wrapper 20. Now take the filling prepared earlier, scoop up a small portion with a teaspoon, and place it in the center of the wrapper, holding it in the palm of your hand 21.

Then, pressing with the tips of your fingers, close the dumplings into a half-moon shape 22, pinching the wrapper along the closing line to seal the filling inside 23 and give the dumpling its typical pouch-like appearance 24. Proceed in the same way with all the dumplings.

When all the Gyoza are ready, heat the wok and pour in the vegetable oil 25. Place the dumplings in it 26 and let them brown for a few seconds without turning them, so that they form their typical and delicious crust on the toasted side 27.

At this point, deglaze with water 28 and immediately cover with a lid 29. They will take 2 minutes to reach the right degree of cooking. In the meantime, prepare the sauce: in a small bowl, place the soy sauce, and grate the ginger into it, after having peeled the outer skin 30.

Add the Tabasco as well 31 and mix well 32. Serve your Gyoza hot, accompanied by the sauce 33!

How to store

Once cooked, the gyoza can be stored in the fridge for a maximum of 1 day. They can be frozen raw if you have used all fresh ingredients and not thawed.