Updated: Mar 9, 2020
Using natural food colour powders to create rainbow gyoza dumplings
"...showcase the variety of natural colourings."
The Dough Dumplings (in this case, gyoza dumplings) have always been one of my favourite ways to showcase the variety of natural colourings. The recipe below is a brief overview of how to make dumpling dough, the filling is an entire other conversation, but some flavour suggestions are made in the recipe. It is very important to use very hot or just boiled water in order to help activate and properly develop the gluten. This contributes to the over all texture/mouth-feel of the final dough, as well as makes it much easier to work with in the process. I like to use a pasta machine to roll out the dough, and I roll my dumpling sheets to the 5/8 setting (with 1 being the thickest setting). It is up to you what size of circles you cut out, depending on what the dumplings are intended for, but I recommend 3-3.5" as a fairly standard size. The recipe below I learned from a very good friend of mine, Jay del Corro, who owns his own asian street food restaurant, Eats of Asia.
Cooking As this recipe makes approx. 60 dumplings, it is good to know that these freeze really well raw. Cook from fresh or frozen with the following technique: 1. Heat a small amount of neutral oil in a medium frying pan. 2. Place the dumplings in flat until they start to brown on the bottom. 3. Mix together 2 tbsp flour and 1/3 cup water, add to the pan, and quickly cover with a tight fitting lead to steam the dumplings through (approx. 10-12 min.). Remove from the pan by inverting onto a plate. I like to serve my dumplings with red wine vinegar and/or chilli crisp sauce, but the sky is the limit when it comes to dumpling dipping sauces! This cooking technique results in a thin crispy layer from the flour and water mixture, also referred to as dumpling "wings". Happy dumpling folding! Remember, practice makes perfect.
The following ingredients and amounts of powder were added to a 1/5th size of the above recipe (111g flour & 75ml water). In this case I exclusively experimented with coloured powders. Feel free to experiment with the colours and adjust as you please:
Charcoal- 1 tbsp Hibiscus- 2 tsp
Radish- 1 tsp Pitaya- 2 tsp Beet- 1 tsp
Annatto- 2 tsp Red Pepper- 1 tbsp Goji- 2 tsp Curcumin- 1/2 tsp Dunaliella Salina- 1 tsp Carrot- 1 tbsp
Spinach- 1 tsp Barley Grass- 2 tsp Pandan- 1 tbsp
Chlorella- 2 tsp Green Spirulina- 2 tsp Blue Spirulina- 1 tsp Butterfly Pea Flower- 1 tsp Wolfberry- 1 tsp Purple Sweet Potato (Ube)- 2 tsp Red Cabbage- 2 tsp Ebony Carrot- 1 tbsp Maqui Berry- 1 tsp
Purple Corn- 2 tsp Acai Berry- 2 tsp
How to? If you want to colour your dough, please consult the previous blog post (click the picture below) for how to integrate colour, how it affects the over all taste, and where to source the colourants used in these dumplings:
If you have some of your own experiences with naturally colouring food or dumpling making, please share and leave a comment! I am always looking for new ingredients to colour with and to get inspired by.