Not-So-Hard Boiled

Who doesn't like dumplings for dinner?

The Outer Sunset has become a dumpling destination.

There's Kingdom of Dumpling, Dumpling Kitchen, Happy Dumplings–and those are just the places with "dumpling" in their names.

Add to their number Yummy Dumpling, a month-old dumpling convenience store.

The convenience is all on your end. Seated by the window, a pair of cooks fold and pinch together shui jiao with the speed and precision few robots could match. Just as quickly, the plump, ridged dumplings are packaged and frozen.

If you don't speak Mandarin, you'll need to order off the English-language menu by pointing, and the owner will fetch plastic bags from the freezer for you. There are eight varieties, including lamb, vegetable and chicken-and-corn.

Our favorite: classic pork dumplings with napa cabbage ($7 for 20), toasted sesame oil rounding out their flavor. Boil them for 8 minutes and dip into black vinegar.

You'll find better steamed pork buns ($4 for 6) elsewhere, but the pork and spinach wontons ($4.80 for 20) make a fine weeknight dinner. Simmer them in chicken broth for 10 minutes, finishing the bowl with chopped scallions and drops of sesame oil.

Boxed mac 'n' cheese takes more work.