Xi’an Beef & Chives Potstickers [China]

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Potstickers are dumplings that have been pan-fried on one side for the crispy bottoms and then steamed to ensure the filling and tops of the wrapper are cooked through. The origin story is that an imperial court chef in the Song dynasty accidentally left a batch of dumplings on the stove for a bit too long and burnt the bottoms of the batch. Without time to prepare a new batch, he brazenly served them bottom-side up, bringing attention to the burnt bottoms and claiming that the burning was intentional. Luckily, the crispy bottoms brought a difference in texture to the traditional dumpling and pleased the members of the court so much that potstickers were born.

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For the wrapper:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1/2 cup bread flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon canola oil
  • 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons ice water

For the filling:

  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1 small bunch green Chinese chives, sliced finely
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Canola oil, for cooking

For the dipping sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Chinkiang vinegar


For the wrapper:

  1. Combine the all-purpose flour, bread flour, and oil together in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Pour in the boiling water and mix with a fork or whisk until the dough starts to come together.
  3. Add in the ice water and with your hands, knead until smooth.
  4. Cover the dough with a damp towel and set aside for 30 minutes.

For the filling:

  1. In a second large mixing bowl, combine the beef, chives, ginger, soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, sesame oil, and kosher salt.
  2. Mix everything together well.

To make the dumplings:

  1. Dust your work surface with flour.
  2. Roll the dough for the wrapper into a log about 1-inch thick in diameter.
  3. Cut into 3/4-inch width pieces.
  4. Flatten each piece with the palm of your hand.
  5. With a rolling pin, roll along the circumference of each piece to make wrappers about 3-inches in diameter.
  6. With a table knife, scoop and spread lengthwise about 2 teaspoons of filling.
  7. Pinch together the sides of the wrapper to encase the filling like an open-ended log.
  8. Heat a cast-iron skillet and pour in enough oil to coat the bottom.
  9. Lower the heat to medium and lay the potstickers in a row in the skillet.
  10. Fry the potstickers until the bottoms are golden.
  11. Pour about 1/3 cup of water over the potstickers and cover the skillet with a lid to allow the dumplings to steam for about 4 minutes, until the filling is cooked through.
  12. Remove the lid and allow the water to boil away and the bottoms of the potstickers to become golden-brown and crispy.
  13. Serve the potstickers bottom-side up with the dipping sauce.

For the dipping sauce:

  1. Mix together the garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and Chinkiang vinegar.
  2. Divide evenly into dipping bowls.


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