Pork Soup Dumplings Recipe

Kick off cooking project season with homemade soup dumplings that get their rich, savory flavor from a slow-cooked stock.
Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Makes 30 dumplings
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 9 hours


for the gelatinous soup:
4 pounds|1 kilogram 775 grams pork knuckle or trotters with marrow and skin 
1 (1-inch piece) ginger, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon white peppercorns  
3 bay leaves
2 pounds|920 grams chicken carcassess, or chicken wings

for the filling: 
7 ½ ounces|210 grams pork leg meat
3 ounces|90 grams pork fatback
2 scallions, roughly chopped 
2 (1-inch) pieces ginger, peeled and roughly chopped 
1 teaspoon granulated sugar 
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground white pepper
½ tablespoon soy sauce  
10 ½ ounces|300 grams gelatinous soup, diced


for the cold water dough: 
1 ½ cups|200 grams ‘00’ flour 
1 teaspoon kosher salt

for the semi-risen yeast dough:
½ teaspoon granulated sugar 
½ teaspoon active dry yeast 
¾ cup|100 grams ‘00’ flour

for the soup dumplings: 
3 ¾ ounces|100 grams yeast dough
10 ½ ounces|200 grams cold water dough 
1 pound 5 ounces|600 grams filling

for the dipping sauce: 
2 tablespoons black vinegar 
1 tablespoon soy sauce 
1 (2-inch) piece ginger, peeled and thinly sliced into threads


  1. Make the soup: Soak the pork knuckles or trotters in a large pot of cold water for 1 to 2 hours in the refrigerator to remove the blood, changing the water several times. Add fresh water to the pot and bring to a boil, then strain, skimming off any fat or scum that rises to the surface. Place the trotters back in the pot, add the sake, ginger, peppercorns, and bay leaf and cover with fresh water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook 3 to 4 hours.
  2. Place the chicken carcasses or wings in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then strain to extract the scum. Add the chicken to the pork broth and cook 3 more hours. Strain the stock and cool the soup overnight, until gelatinized. (You can add fresh boiling water to the bones and cook for one more hour if you would like to make extra stock for next time!)
  3. The next day, scrape the fat off of the top layer of soup. Dice the soup into small cubes, then chop into smaller pieces. Reserve 10 ½ ounces|300 grams of soup to be mixed with the filling.
  4. Make the filling: Place the pork and fatback in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm up. Place the scallions and ginger in a mortar and pestle and pound until crushed. (Alternatively, blend in a food processor or blender.) Add 200 ml of water, mix, and set aside. Remove the pork and fatback from the freezer and thinly slice. Dice the slices into small cubes, then chop finely with a cleaver. (You can also grind with a meat grinder but it won’t be as bouncy.)
  5. Combine the chopped meat and fatback, white pepper, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. With clean hands, mix the meat mixture together, then add the soy sauce, squeezing the meat with your hands to emulsify the meat and make it bouncy. Slowly add the ginger-scallion water in 3 batches, working it with your hands to combine. Gently fold the 10 ½ ounces|300 grams of diced gelatinized soup into the mixture. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  6. Make the cold water dough: In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Slowly stream ½ cup|100 ml (50%) room temperature water into the mixture and combine with a wooden spoon. Place the mixture on a clean work surface and knead for 5 to 10 minutes, then place in a bowl, cover, and allow the dough to rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Uncover the dough and knead for 10 more minutes, working horizontally and turning the dough 90 degrees each time you work the dough. Rest for 10 minutes, then roll out the dough, smooth side up, until flat, then flip it, fold it into thirds, flatten with your hands, and repeat. Repeat this flipping and folding kneading process about 5 more times then rest, covered, for 20 more minutes. After the third resting, roll the dough into a tube, cover in plastic wrap, and rest overnight.
  7. Make the semi-risen yeast dough: In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, yeast, and ¼ cup|55 ml (55%) room temperature water. Place the flour in a large bowl and slowly pour the sugar-yeast mixture into it, mixing with a wooden spoon. Knead the mixture into a ball and rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Knead the dough once more for a couple of minutes, then place the dough in a large bowl and let it double in size, 1 to 2 hours. Push out the excess air, then fold the dough into thirds and then in half, lengthwise.
  8. After both doughs have rested, measure 50 grams (30%) of the yeast dough and combine with 100 grams (70%) of the cold water dough, rolling it together into one dough. Dust the dough with bench flour and work the doughs through a pasta roller. Fold the dough into thirds, roll it flat, and work it through the pasta roller 4 more times. Roll the dough into a log, wrap it, and rest for 20 to 30 minutes.
  9. Shape and fill the dumplings: Roll the rested dough into a long, thin rope. Divide the rope into 20 (8 gram) pieces. Dust the dough with bench flour, then press each piece with your palm into an individual, round wrapper. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a thin (4-inch) circle, turning the dough halfway clockwise with one hand as you continue rolling and turning to make an evenly circular wrapper.
  10. Place about 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of a wrapper. Pull one piece of the wrapper up and over the filling, then pleat the wrapper all around the filling, turning the dumpling as you fold (you should have about 21 folds). On the last pleat, seal the soup dumpling closed and twist it at the top to ensure the filling is tightly sealed.
  11. Make the dipping sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the black vinegar and soy sauce. Place the ginger on top and reserve.
  12. Steam the dumplings: Gently place 6 dumplings, spaced 1-inch apart, in a bamboo steamer over a wok or large saucepan of boiling water so the tops are facing up. Cover the steamer and steam the dumplings for about 8 minutes, until the dumplings are cooked through. Repeat with the remaining dumplings and serve immediately with the dipping sauce.

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