Easy appetizers - Spring Rolls & Dim sum

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A recent visit to one of the Chinese Grocers here was such a revelation, I found almost all the veggies that I’ve been missing here.It was actually my Bro’s engagement in India, I was feeling pathetic sitting here and to cheer up my mood P took me for shopping,which always helps me:-P. Apart from the other shopping,I thoroughly enjoyed my veggie shopping too.I picked up Banana Flower(Vazhai Poo),White Pumpkin,Small Green Brinjals to name a few. I also picked up Wanton wraps and spring roll sheets from there and made these yummy appetizers:-P

Dim sum which is a Cantonese word literally means “Touch the heart” .This appetizer has surely touched my heart,an all time fav one:) Remember Mainland China/Beijing bites in India???? These are served in small steamer baskets. In most of the places these are ordered from a menu,in few other places these are brought & served by the servers in a trolley, one such restaurant that I remember visiting is Civet in Bangalore,India which followed this.Dim Sum can be made by steaming or frying ,even pan fried ones are very common. The Chinese prefer having Chinese tea (Jasmine Tea to be precise) along with them, because it helps in digestion. Here in the US, the shallow fried ones are called “Potstickers”. Nowadays things are getting Indianized, but still Dim Sum rules! Its believed that making Dim sum is an art by itself.These days it’s a lot easier to make one,thanks to the wraps which are easily available. In India they are quite popular as “Momos”. I’ve personally known these as Momos only,which are mainly made with rice flour.Dim Sums however, use some kind of specialty rice flour.

They are called Wantons & Dumplings too. Momos are Tibetan name for Dumpling. And Wantons are type of dumpling common in Chinese cuisine.Huh…..confusing,eh? Well I made both steamed and the fried ones. As far as I’ve known Wantons are always associated with the fried and Momos with the steamed ones. Whatever the name is, it’s surely is a winner. For the sauce, I just randomly added the ingredients, didn’t actually have any definite recipe in mind, the outcome was super duper!

Spring Rolls


Spring Roll Pastry Sheets – As many as u need. I used 10 of them
Cabbage – 1 cup(shredded)
Carrot – 1 (grated)
Noodles – ½ cup cooked (I used veg hakka noodles)
Capsicum – ½ cup(finely chopped)
Onions – ½ cup(finely chopped)
Ginger Garlic Paste -1 tsp
Soy Sauce – 2 tsp
Green Chillies – 4 (finely chopped/crushed)
Oil – 2tsp + for frying
Salt – as per taste

For the sealing -

Cornstarch – 1 tbsp mixed with 5tbsp of water.

Method :

1.In a wok/pan,heat 2 tsp of oil.Add Ginger Garlic paste and Onion, sauté for a minute. Add the remaining ingredients one by one.Saute it well for 3-4mins,do not overcook the veggies they need to be crispy.Allow it to cool.
2.Remove each pastry sheet carefully and place a spoon full of mixture and roll it tightly. First from the end, then the sides and then the opposite side. Mix cornstarch with water and use it for sealing.
3.Deep fry in hot oil, until brown.

The filled rolls can also be frozen and fried as and when required.

Chilli Garlic Sauce


Ginger – 1 inch piece
Garlic – 2 small pods
Red Chillies – 5-6(increase as per individual spice levels)
Onions – ½ cup(roughly chopped)
Soy Sauce – 2 tbsp
Tomato Ketchup – 2 tbsp
Salt – as per taste

Method –

1.Grind the onions,redchillies,ginger and garlic together.
2.Heat a cup of water,add the paste and the remaining ingredients.
3.Allow it to boil and switch of the flame when it turns thick.

This was actually red in color,because of the bright light it looks orangish.In the final display with the Dim sum it looks fine.

Steamed Dim Sum


Wanton wraps – 10 (use as many as u want)
Cabbage – 1 cup (finely chopped)
Onion – ¼ cup (finely chopped)
Tofu – ¼ cup(crumbled)
Oil – 2 tsp
Ginger Garlic paste – 1 tsp
Green chillies - 4 (finely chopped/crushed)
Soy Sauce – 1 tsp
Salt – as per taste


1.In a Wok/pan,heat oil,add ginger garlic paste,green chillies and onions, sauté for a minute,add the remaining ingredients. Sauté well, don’t overcook the veggies. Allow it to cool.
2.Remove each wrap carefully, place the filling in the centre and fold as per your choice.

Moisten the ends of the wrapper with a dab of water.Fold the wrap as per your choice be it a single fold/similar to our very own Modaks(Kozhakattai) or even fold it into half and press/crimp the edges forming a pleat(saree pleat) like structure.

3.Steam it for about 10-12mins.

Always serve these hot,else it looses its taste.

Fried Dim Sum


Wanton wraps – as per requirement
Cheese – 3 tbsp

Method –

1.Place l’il bit of cheese in the centre and fold it as per your choice.Just like the steamed ones,a single fold would do good too ie., fold it diagonally than seal the edges using water. Ensure it is folded well, else the cheese would ooze out and melt.
2.Deep fry in hot oil until brown. Serve hot with the sauce.

Any kind of cheese can be used. Instead of cheese,the filling used for steamed ones can also be used.The Spring Roll Pastry sheets and Wanton wraps can be found in the frozen section in any Chinese grocers. Wanton wraps are available in different thickness; I used the thin ones.Instead of Frying these can be Pan fried too.


sowmya February 19, 2009 at 11:29 PM  

wow..those are lovely ideas one can do with those wrappers..and nice info too on them..

sowmya February 19, 2009 at 11:29 PM  

wow..those are lovely ideas one can do with those wrappers..and nice info too on them..

Madhumathi February 19, 2009 at 11:50 PM  

Hi Nithya,The spring rolls and wantons make me drool here.You have made it so perfect,dear.Keep rocking..

Preety February 20, 2009 at 12:20 AM  

wow i love all those gr8 appetizer recipes will give them a try asap

Lavanya February 20, 2009 at 12:29 AM  

spring rolls are yummy..i thought of preparing the same 2day but somehow i missed it!!

Chitra February 20, 2009 at 2:20 AM  

yummy appetizer dear!!love the spring rolls:)

Happy cook February 20, 2009 at 6:14 AM  

I love springrolls and dimesum and yours looks so delicious.

Asha February 20, 2009 at 6:47 AM  

We love Spring rolls and hot sauce. Never ate Din Sums before though, looks good. Enjoy! :))

Kitchen Flavours February 20, 2009 at 7:32 AM  

Fried Dim sum is new to me. Looks yummy. Love spring rolls...

Laavanya February 20, 2009 at 8:08 AM  

Mouthwatering appetizers indeed.. I love the pan-fried versions and actually the steamed ones are just as yum too. Have't deep fried them. It's been ages since I had spring rolls.

Ashwini February 20, 2009 at 8:14 AM  

I have heard the name of dim sum but not tasted..Lovely spring rolls..Nicely wrapped..Yummmy

Uj February 20, 2009 at 9:07 AM  

Though I am in China I have never tried local dimsum or wontons. Being a veggie the options are very limited at local chinese restaurants. Looks yummy :D Indo Chinese is my all time fav

Deepa Hari February 20, 2009 at 10:55 AM  

Appetizers look Yum...Love the spring rolls and dim sum....never tried making at home...Good job Nithya.

AnuSriram February 20, 2009 at 1:36 PM  

It was like... i'm inside a Chinese Restaurant! Beautiful entries! I'm craving for them rite now!!

Varsha Vipins February 20, 2009 at 2:49 PM  

Wow..gal..u got a feast there..:)
Dunno y i don like dimsums much,but the fried ones look so good..n spring rolls ofcourse are yum yums..:)

Superchef February 20, 2009 at 3:19 PM  

the spring rolls look nice and crispy..mustve been delicious with the chilli sauce! :)

veggie belly February 20, 2009 at 4:17 PM  

very yummy! I love the sauce recipe.

Usha February 20, 2009 at 4:53 PM  

These look awesome and so very tempting, loved your sauce recipe too. How sad that you had to miss your bro's engagement, it really most difficult when we miss imp events back home doesn't it ?

Priya Sriram February 20, 2009 at 5:33 PM  

Yummy Spring rolls & dim sum... Perfect pictures! :) I loved the sauce specially...

Nithya Praveen February 20, 2009 at 5:43 PM  

Sowmya,Madhumathi,Preety,Lavanya,Chitra,Happy Cook,Asha,Lubna,Ashwini,Deepa Hari,Veggie Belly,Varsha – Thanks for the wonderful comments
Laavanya – So now its time to try,isn’t it?:)
Ujwal – Oh yes,you must be seeing these quite often.Thats nice,I agree am a veggie too,options are very limited.
AnuSriram – He he that’s a neat comment,thanks!
Superchef – Yes it was absolutely delicious and great in taste.thanks:)
Usha – I absolutely agree with what you said.Being here,we miss out a lot of occasions with family.Am happy I will be attending the wedding very soon,this keeps me motivated
Priya – Thanks for stopping by Priya!

Sukanya Ramkumar February 20, 2009 at 5:47 PM  

Lovely appetizer recipe. Looks so good. These wonton warps are so versatile, staring form appetizer to dessert anything can be done so creative. YUM!

Mahimaa's kitchen February 20, 2009 at 6:10 PM  

woww...look at those.. looks so good nithya... wish i had them right now... very nice.

Pavithra Kodical February 20, 2009 at 6:45 PM  

What a coincidence Nithya..I made spring rolls few hours ago and having it now with a cup of tea..I made with Phylo dough..Will post in my blog soon :) Taurians do think alike :)

Mangala Bhat February 20, 2009 at 6:57 PM  

wow ! i love spring rolls .. i love the ideas that u have given there .u made it perfect dear :)love the hot sauce aswell ..Thanks for sharing :)

Red Chillies February 20, 2009 at 11:37 PM  

Chinese or Vietnamese groceries are many times revelation for me as well. (except I cannot tolerate the sea food smell there :-((.
Love spring rolls any time and both of them look good.

Jaishree February 21, 2009 at 12:30 AM  

Wow! Lovely appetizer recipe... Dim sum is new to me. These look awesome and so very tempting, loved your sauce recipe too. . looks so good Nithya:)

PG February 21, 2009 at 11:58 AM  

lovely! I like your spring rolls a lot. And I've never tried garlic chilli sauce at home, yours looks wonderful. have to try it the next time i need a quick fix chutney to go with such snacks. Thanks for sharing!
I love dim sums and yours sounds wonderful! especially the steamed ones. delicious!

Yasmeen February 21, 2009 at 3:27 PM  

Delicious way to beat the bad mood,love the tasty spread of Chinese appetizers:)

vidhas February 21, 2009 at 11:14 PM  

nice spread of starters. will surely give a try.something is waiting for you.

Priya February 22, 2009 at 8:41 AM  

Oh my god, send me some spring romms n dim sum Nithya..just drooling over them, nice info too..loved reading!!

kalpana February 22, 2009 at 8:57 AM  

yummy starters! dim sum looks awesome and your recipes are so easy nithya..thx for sharing :)

Preety February 22, 2009 at 2:03 PM  

hey do you know who is hosting FIC orange event so that i can send my entry also

Nithya Praveen February 22, 2009 at 7:50 PM  

Sukanya – I agree Sukanya,wantons are so versatile.Thanks for the comments
Mahima,Mangala,Jaishree,Yasmeen,Priya,Kalpana – Thanks for the comments.
Pavithra – With Filo dough? That’s nice,will wait for ur post.And as u said,Taureans do think alike:)
Redchillies – Thanks for the comments,even I cant the stand the smell of these shops.
PG – Do try n lemme know:)
Vidhas – Thanks so much for the comment and the award.

Nithya Praveen February 22, 2009 at 7:50 PM  

Preety – FIC Orange is hosted by Aparna - http://mydiversekitchen.blogspot.com/ -this is her blog.

Uma February 23, 2009 at 3:16 PM  

mmm. these are yummy chinese recipes. looks so mouth-watering.

Cham February 24, 2009 at 3:55 PM  

Chinese dumpling and spring roll I am ready, lovely sauce!

fourthsensesamayal May 5, 2009 at 2:00 PM  

Spring rolls look yum. Nice blog. keep it going. I am a fresher to the kitchen and I find ur blog interesting. Do take a look at my blog when u find time.

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