For this week’s Petits Chefs session, the boys combined a #52NewFoods chapter with Chinese New Year! We didn’t spend a lot of time chatting about veggies this week since all the boys knew bok choy (at least by name which is more than can be said for the radicchio!) and I knew that we had a lot of work to do since we were making dumplings. The boys roughly chopped bok choy, mushrooms, garlic and ginger and then we blitzed everything in the food processor (they were very excited they didn’t have to chop everything so small this week!). We cooked the veggies down with a little bit of soy sauce then allowed the mixture to cool before we got to filling our wonton wrappers and forming our dumplings.
One boy asked why we weren’t making the wrappers from scratch. Well, actually we did, once when we had a gluten-free boy to accommodate when Chef Vanessa Yeung came to work with the boys for the first time but for the most part, one hour does not afford us enough time to make EVERYTHING from scratch. I like that the boy had faith we could and didn’t even consider that it was not an option though!
Before you say anything about the wrappers, I know the round kind are more traditional but in my mostly-Polish neighbourhood, I was lucky to find these. We had a long weekend last weekend and the holiday Monday meant I was not at work and closer to more options for shopping for the club this week. In any case, the boys got to practice the fine art of forming dumplings and did pretty well with the square shape.
But on the whole, the boys did really well, even if, shall we say, some weeks are better than others in terms of the boys’ focus (I’m just being honest here!). Making dumplings “feels” easy” for many of the boys so they often start chatting and when you are chatting, you sometimes forget to tightly seal the dumplings, resulting in losing a few in the cooking process.
We boiled (poached?) these for convenience this week but talked about steaming them or frying them too. Love that there are so many options to cook them!
No, perhaps not traditional but as from-scratch as you can get in an hour with 15 boys under the age of 12. I say we did well! We did miss Vanessa’s expertise though and can’t wait for her to come back in the spring!
Read more about the classes Vanessa Yeung offers in Toronto on Aphrodite Cooks.
You might also like to read about the Petits Chefs’ other forays into Chinese cuisine with Vanessa here:
Vanessa Yeung cooks Soi Gau and Ginger Chicken Potstickers with Les Petits Chefs
Vanessa Yeung makes Siu Mi and Mango Salad with Les Petits Chefs
Vanessa Yeung makes Bison and Pork dumplings and Coconut Tarts with Les Petits Chefs
Vanessa Yeung makes Cold Rolls and BBQ pork and chicken crisps with Les Petits Chefs
Vanessa Yeung makes potstickers and steamed dumplings with Les Petits Chefs
Vanessa Yeung makes steamed buns with Les Petits Chefs
Vanessa Yeung makes chicken and shrimp potstickers with Les Petits Chefs
Want to see 52 New Foods in action? Check out the 52 New Foods Junior Chef Classes at your local Williams Sonoma (call your local store for details!)
Please note: The product links from Amazon, Amazon.ca and The Book Depository are affiliate links meaning if you click over and purchase something, I will receive a very small percentage of the purchase price which goes towards maintaining eat. live. travel. write. Thank you in advance!
Disclosure: I received a copy of the 52 New Foods Challenge cookbook for the purposes of taking part in the #52NewFoods Challenge through Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Ambassador Community. I was asked to create one original recipe for the challenge. I did not receive any further compensation for writing this post nor any other promotion of the book I might be involved with.
Congrats to Katie who won my Brown Eggs and Jam Jars giveaway! I’ll be in touch via email!