Kimchi mandu, as the name suggests, is a variation of Korean dumplings made with kimchi as a main ingredient. The key to making good kimchi mandu is to use fully fermented kimchi for the extra kick that this mandu is known for. Kimchi mandu is especially good for making soup, manduguk or tteok-manduguk (rice cake soup with mandu). Although it does take some time to make them, home-made mandu is always well worth the effort. On New Year's day, I made these to use in tteok-manduguk, a traditional Korean must-eat New Year's dish. Here, I steamed a few of them for lunch.
1 package mandu pee (dumpling skins/wrappers) (usually about 40 pieces)
2 cups chopped kimchi
1/4 lb ground pork (for a vegetarian dish, substitute shiitake/button mushrooms for meat)
1/4 lb ground beef
6 oz tofu
8 oz bean sprouts
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon finely minced ginger (or juiced)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 or more teaspoon salt to taste
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Finely chop the kimchi and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Blanch the bean sprouts in boiling water, drain, chop and squeeze out water. Squeeze out water from tofu. Using a cheesecloth will make squeezing easier. Work in small batches - 1 handful at a time. The squeezed ingredients should be dry and crumbly. Finely chop the onion and scallions.
Mix all ingredients well in a large bowl by hand.
Place one heaping teaspoonful of the filling on a wrapper placed on your palm. Wet the edges of the wrapper with water and seal tightly (pushing the air out with your fingers) into a half-moon shape. Repeat this process until all the filling/wrappers are used.
Kimchi mandu can be steamed for about 10 minutes in a steamer. Make sure to line the steamer with a cheesecloth or wet paper towel to prevent mandu from sticking. For additional cooking and freezing tips, see my Mandu posting.