XLB, Xiao Long Bao, 小笼包, Soup Dumpling

by - 9:35 AM

XLB, Xiao Long Bao, Soup Dumpling, Dim Sum (Chinese) 小笼包. On a snowy cold day, this is one of the most craved for dim sum item. I made it with real chicken broth gelatin cubes today. Guess they're not really difficult to make, just the key to this dish is PATIENCE!


  • 3 pounds chicken backs or wings
  • 1/2 pound Chinese ham or slab bacon
  • 6 scallions, white separated, greens roughly chopped
  • 1-inch knob ginger
  • 1 tablespoon white peppercorns
  • Salt to season

  • For the Filling
  • 1/3 pound ground pork or chicken minced
  • 1/4 pound raw shrimp, peeled
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
  • 2 teaspoons sugar

  • For the Dough:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • Pinch of salt
  • For steaming: Napa cabbage leaves

  • 1. Combine chicken bones, ham, scallion whites, half of scallion greens, ginger, and white peppercorns in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat, remove to a simmer, and simmer for 2 to 3 hours. Strain broth, season to taste with salt, cover, and refrigerate until set into a semi-firm jelly, at least 8 hours.
  • 2. Combine pork (or chicken), shrimp, soy sauce, wine, sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, and remaining scallion greens in a food processor. Process until a fine paste is formed, about 12 to 15 one-second pulses. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  • 3. Meanwhile, place flour in the bowl of food processor. With machine running, slowly drizzle in water until cohesive dough is formed (you probably won't need all the water). All dough to ride around processor for 30 seconds. Form into a ball using floured hands and transfer to a bowl. Cover with a damp towel and let rest for at least 30 minutes.
  • 4. When broth becomes a gelatin, transfer filling mixture to a bowl along with 1 cup of jellied broth (save the rest for another use). Beat or whisk it in until homogenous. Keep filling well chilled.
  • 5. Divide dough into 4 sections, and each section into 10 small tablespoon-sized balls (each about 12 grams), making 40 balls total. On a well-floured work surface, roll each ball into a round 3 1/2- to 4-inches in diameter. Stack wrappers and keep under wet cloth until all of them are rolled out.
  • 6. To form dumplings, place 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of a wrapper. Moisten the edges of the wrapper with a wet fingertip or a pastry brush. Pleat edges of the wrapper repeatedly, pinching the edge closed after each pleat until the entire dumpling is sealed. in a cinched purse shape. Pinch and twist top to seal. Transfer sealed dumplings to a lightly floured wooden or parchment-lined board.
  • 7. Place a bamboo steamer over a wok with 2 inches of water. Place over moderately high heat until simmering. line steamer with napa cabbage leaves (is recommended as these green paper liners still will stick) and place dumplings directly on leaves. Steam until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Serve immediately, being careful not to break them.

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