I can’t believe this is the first time I deep fried anything on the blog! I know it’s not exactly the healthiest way to cook, but hey, we all need to live a little, right?
After shooting one of my dumpling pleating videos a few months ago, I had a lot of dumpling wrappers leftover and was figuring out what to do with them. Taking inspiration from samosas, I decided to make fried dumplings with a curried potato filling. I mixed onions, garlic, ginger, peas, diced bell pepper, scallions, and mashed potatoes and seasoned everything with salt and a mild yellow curry powder. As far as the dumpling filling goes, the list of ingredients is quite short. However, the flavor is absolutely delicious.
For the dumpling wrappers, choose circular wrappers that aren’t too thick (i.e., don’t use thick potsticker wrappers). You want the dumplings to be light and crisp on the outside, and that is better achieved with thinner wrappers.
I know that many of you prefer baked dumplings over fried ones, so I included instructions for baked dumplings in the headnote. Personally, I prefer the fried dumplings because the entire wrapper gets browned and crisp. The texture of the fried wrapper is a great contrast to the soft potato filling. When you bake the dumplings, only the folds on the top of the dumplings will get crispy. The bottoms brown too, but it is not as crispy as I’d like. My husband thought that the baked dumplings were fine, but I am much more picky when it comes to dumplings.
(The dumplings on the right are baked.)
COOKING NOTES FOR THE FRIED DUMPLINGS
- Freezing the dumplings: I have never fried frozen dumplings before, so I don’t know what the texture of the wrapper will be like when you deep fry them. However, you can bake the frozen dumplings. To freeze the dumplings, place the finished dumplings on parchment lined plates or baking sheet. Cover the plate or baking sheet with plastic wrap. Frozen dumplings will keep for months. When you are ready to bake the dumplings, transfer them to a baking sheet and spray them with cooking oil. There is no need to thaw the dumplings. The cooking time will be around 11 to 13 minutes, until the tops of the dumplings are a deep golden brown.
- Do not refrigerate uncooked dumplings: If in doubt, always freeze uncooked dumplings. When you refrigerate uncooked dumplings, the moisture from the filling continues to seep into the wrapper, causing it to turn into mush and lose its shape.
- Small Batch Dumplings: If 50-something dumplings seem like a lot for you, feel free to halve the recipe. You’ll still need about 3 cups of oil for deep frying the dumplings.
- Reusing frying oil: Growing up, my family always kept a bottle of “cooked oil” (熟油) in the pantry. Essentially, it was the oil Mama Lin used for deep frying dumplings. We mixed the oil with soy sauce to season dishes. My favorite was always rice with soy sauce and “cooked oil.” I think it’s okay to reuse frying oil, so long as it doesn’t turn rancid. Filter the oil (there’s always loose crumbs in frying oil), and store it in a glass container in the refrigerator. You can use the oil for regular cooking. Here’s a great guide from Epicurious about reusing frying oil.
LOOKING FOR MORE DUMPLINGS?
- Red Curry Wonton Soup with Zucchini Noodles
- How to Make Potstickers
- Red Curry Tofu Dumplings (with braided pleat)
- You can also visit my complete dumpling archives here.
Curried Potato Fried Dumplings
- 1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled
- 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt (1 1/4 teaspoons table salt), divided
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced (about 1 to 1 1/4 cups diced)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 1/2 large red bell pepper, diced (about 2/3 to 3/4 cup diced)
- 3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons mild yellow curry powder
- 50 to 55 circular dumpling wrappers, medium thickness
- water for sealing dumplings
- about 3 cups canola oil for frying dumplings, (see note)
- Chop the peeled potatoes into 1-inch chunks and transfer them into a pot. Fill the pot with just enough water to cover the potatoes. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt to the water. Bring the water to boil. Reduce the heat a little and let the potatoes boil for another 5 to 7 minutes, until the potatoes are fork tender.
- Drain the potatoes and transfer them into a large bowl. Mash the potatoes with a fork. I prefer using a fork because it’s easier for me to mash small chunks of potatoes. Set the potatoes aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes, until the onions soften. Add the minced garlic and ginger and cook for about 30 seconds to a minute. Then, add the bell pepper, peas, and scallions and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Season the vegetables with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and the curry powder. Stir until the vegetables are coated with the curry powder.
- Add the cooked vegetables into the bowl with the potatoes and stir to combine. Keep stirring until the potatoes have an even yellow color from the curry powder. Let the filling cool for 10 minutes before filling the dumplings.
- Set up your dumpling-making station with a large baking sheet, dumpling wrappers, the filling, and a small bowl of water. If you are making these dumplings by yourself, cover the wrappers and finished dumplings with a cloth to keep the wrappers from drying out.
- Dip your finger into the bowl of water and draw a circle around the exterior of the wrapper. Lay the wrapper on your left hand. Add about 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of filling in the center. Starting from the right side, start sealing the wrapper together, until you reach the center of the dumpling filling. Then, use your left index finger to push the unsealed part of the wrapper towards the center. Seal the dumpling. Refer to the photos or this video for visuals on how to fold the dumplings. Place the sealed dumpling on the baking sheet and cover with a cloth. Repeat this dumpling making process until you have used all the dumpling filling.
- Line 2 large plates with paper towels. Set them aside.
- Heat 3 cups of canola oil in a wok or heavy bottomed pot, over medium-high heat. You’ll need to heat the oil for about 4 to 5 minutes, until it reaches about 325ºF. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can test the heat of the oil by adding an unused wrapper into the oil. If the wrapper starts sizzling soon after you add it to the oil, you are ready to deep fry the dumplings.
- Add the dumplings to the wok or pot, no more than 10 at a time. Cook the dumplings until they are golden, about 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the dumplings halfway through cooking to ensure that they brown evenly. I use bamboo chopsticks for flipping, but tongs work well, too. Use a spider strainer to remove the cooked dumplings from the wok. Transfer the finished dumplings to the plates lined with paper towels. Repeat with the remaining dumplings.
- Serve the fried dumplings with sweet chili sauce or my homemade honey chili sauce. These dumplings are best consumed the day they are made.