Chinese Cantonese Cuisine: Har gow
Food - Drink
Har Gow: The Delicate Shrimp Dumplings That Are A Dim Sum Staple
What Is Har Gow?
Har gow is a delicate dumpling with a simple, earthy flavor that highlights its juicy filling made with shrimp, ginger, and bamboo shoots. The dumplings are unique for their thin, glassy wrapper which is so translucent it reveals the pinkness of the shrimp inside, earning them the nickname crystal shrimp dumplings.
While the main ingredient in har gow is always shrimp, it is enhanced by finely minced ginger and bamboo shoots which give it an herbaceous spice and nutty flavor along with a slightly crunchy texture. White pepper, sesame oil, and oyster sauce are also added, giving it a smoky, toasted flavor and a bit of sweetness.
How to Make Har Gow
To prepare the filling, chop your shrimp until it reaches a paste-like consistency, add in the rest of your ingredients, and let rest. To make the wrapper boil water and fat, then gradually add it to your wheat starch and tapioca flour and knead. Divide your dough and roll it into wrappers, then add your filling, fold, and steam.
Alternative Methods
Since perfecting your dumplings at home can be pretty tricky, it’s probably easier to get har gow at a restaurant, and it should be on most dim sum menus. Alternatively, you can find frozen har gow in stores, buy a premade har gow flour mixture to simplify making the wrappers, or you can opt for rice paper as a wrapper alternative.