Sweet steamed dumplings

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Sweet steamed dumplings stuffed with juicy blueberries. Soft and fluffy inside with a sticky outer and deliciously yummy eaten hot. Usually served with a hot fruity sauce, whipped cream or yoghurt. But equally good on the following day, fried in butter until crispy and sprinkled with sugar. Just for that it’s worth making a few extra ones – perfect leftovers.

This is my Mum’s recipe. She would make these often stuffed with apple and cinnamon in the autumn and strawberries in the summer. I remember coming home from school to my Mum pottering in the kitchen with two huge pans steaming away on the stove. Mum didn’t have a steamer so she made one by tightly stretching linen towel across the pan and tying it with a piece of string to create taut surface on which the dumplings were rested. Another pan upturned would be placed over them and a make-do steamer was created quickly and easily, whenever needed.

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And unlike my Mum, I have steamed these using cupcake cases for ease of handling and removal from the steamer. The dough is beautifully soft and silky when risen – although a little sticky, I’d urge you not to add any more flour as you want these lovely and fluffy once cooked. They are versatile enough to accommodate almost any fruit filling so feel free to experiment, I’d love to hear of your choices. Here is the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 500 grams of plain flour
  • 2 medium eggs
  • pinch of salt
  • 250 ml of milk
  • 20 grams of fast acting yeast
  • 3 tbsp of sugar
  • 50 grams of melted and cooled butter
  • blueberries and sugar for the filling

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Warm up the milk in a saucepan but do not bring it to the boil. It should be body temperature warm. Add sugar and yeast to the milk, give it a mix and leave it aside for a few minutes.

In a separate bowl, mix the flour and salt. Add the eggs and start mixing it. Now slowly add the milk, sugar and yeast mixture followed by the melted butter. Keep mixing it until you achieve a soft, sticky dough.

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Cover the bowl and let the dough rest and rise until doubled in size. When you see the surface starting to wrinkle, it’s time to shape the dumplings.

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Gently transfer the dough onto a floured board and roll it out to 1.5 cm thick. Using a cutter or a glass, cut out circles out of the dough, re-rolling the dough as desired until it’s all used up.

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Place each circle in the palm of your hand, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of sugar and add 5 to 6 blueberries, size depended.

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Pinch the edges together to seal the filling in and place seam down in the cupcake case. Continue until all of the dumplings are filled. Cover them with towel and allow the dumplings to rest for 30 minutes or so until puffed up again.

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Place few dumplings in the steamer set over a pan of boiling water and steam for 10-15 minutes each. Remember they will double in size so don’t overcrowd the steamer.

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Once cooked, remove them from the steamer and peel off the cupcake cases. Serve the dumplings straight away with hot blueberry sauce and some whipped cream if desired. The sauce is simply made by heating up blueberries, few spoonfuls of sugar and a good squeeze of lemon and allowed to boil for 5 minutes or so.

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And if you do find yourself with a few leftover, have them for breakfast as suggested earlier. Or share them with a friend – dumpling deliveries tend to be welcome by most. Enjoy x

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