They are tiny hot pockets of deliciousness that bring smiles to people around the world. That’s right; we’re talking dumplings, humble, bite-sized, and brilliant.
With so many different variations across the globe, here are the top 10 dumplings you should know before you eat.
- Hong Kong: Har Gow
Hong Kong is Asia’s financial epicenter and they’re certainly on the money when it comes to doing their own version of the dumpling. Originating from Guangdong in China, these shrimp parcels are pure deliciousness. Hot tip: a true Har Gow should be made up of seven to ten rivets on its outer wrapper – but hey who’s counting!?
- Japan: Dango
The Japanese know how to make a sweet treat, but nothing tops their dessert-style dumpling, the dango. Made from rice flour and served on a skewer – which means you typically get three to four dango! – this treat is the real deal. Covered in syrup, dango is served with a green tea – the ultimate cuisine combo.
- Myanmar: Mon Lone Yae Paw
You know that any food which is saved for a special occasion must be good, which is certainly the case with Mon Lone Yae Paw. These delicious rice balls come stuffed with palm sugar and are traditionally eaten during Myanmar New Year. Served on a banana leaf and covered in coconut, it’s a celebratory snack you won’t soon forget!
- Nepal: Momo
This is one of the most popular dishes in Nepal and it’s not hard to see why. Steamed to perfection and packed full of meat, the Momo is a must have. The key to making the perfect momo is getting the right amount of juice. It’s also crucial that you serve momo with a side of dipping sauce – tradition says tomato chutney, but feel free to experiment!
- USA: Potstickers
It’s hardly a surprise that in the USA – a multicultural melting pot – they’ve got the most delicious dumpling influences in one convenient cuisine. The potsticker is a combination of Chinese dumpling styles. Made with pork and cabbage, potstickers are boiled and fried, which explains their magical texture.
- Germany: Knodel
Europe as a continent is home to some pretty impressive cuisines, but nothing compares to the crispy Knodel. Popular across Germany and Austria, these boiled dumplings are made from flour, bread, or potatoes and can either be a sweet or savoury treat. Often served as a side dish, the knodel is perfect proof that the Deutsch know how to do a dumpling.
- China: Xiao Long Bao
Steamed to perfection, light, and fluffy, Xiao Long Bao is one of mankind’s most delicious creations. The food originated in the Nanxiang district of Shanghai and to this day large crowds converge on the area to get Xiao Long Bao straight from its birth place. Now the dumpling has become world famous and it’s hardly a surprise. Filled with pork, broth, soup and chives, it’s as close as we’ll get to flavoursome perfection.
- Italy: Gnocchi
A potato pocket that demands immediate attention, Italy’s version of the dumpling is gnocchi. Whether made from semolina or wheat flour, gnocchi combine cheese, eggs, and potato to serve up a billowy ball of tastiness. The best part about these dumplings is that because they’re part of the pasta family they come surround by sauce and cheese. That’s a win-win situation.
- India: Samosa
India’s version of the dumpling comes in the form of the samosa. The crispy outer shell is made from wheat or maida flour and is then deep-fried. Hidden inside the samosa are the best ingredients India has to offer. Think spices, potatoes, peas, meat, and onions. This dumpling also comes with a dipping sauce, a mint sauce chutney that caps it all off.
- Korea: Mandu
Korea comes to the dumpling party with their own twist on the tasty treat. The mandu is much like all the classics – full of ground beef or pork, complete with garlic, onions and broth. They can then either be fried, steamed, or boiled. The kicker for this Korean classic is that it comes with Kimchi.
Don’t have time to remember all of the above? Check out Cathay Pacific’s infographic below on Dumplings Around the World for a quick 101 guide on the tastiest doughy parcels across the globe.