Siew Mai

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Siew mai, or 烧卖(shao mai),is a type of traditional Chinese dumpling, originating from Hohhot, Inner Mongolia. Popular in Cantonese cuisine, it is usually served with har kow, another type of dim sum

Let's start cooking!

Sliced prawn on chopping board

Step 1 - Marinate the prawns

  • In a mixing bowl, marinate the prawn meat with 1 tsp salt for 5 minutes then wash away the salt under running water until the water runs clear.
  • Place the prawn in a colander to drain away as much water as possible.
Mix marinated prawn meat with mushroom, pork belly and season

Step 2 - Mix the filling

  • In a mixing bowl, combine the prawn meat, Chinese mushroom, pork belly, 1 tsp Shaoxing wine, ½ tsp sesame oil, ½ tsp caster sugar, 1 tsp oyster sauce, ¼ tsp cornstarch, ¼ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp white pepper and pound it on the plate repeatedly under it forms a firm mass, like meatloaf or a burger patty.
    Fatty cuts of meat make the dim sum more savoury and succulent –but are also much higher in calories!
Fill wonton skin with meat using a bamboo paddle

Step 3 - Form the wontons

  • Place 1 tsp of the filling on the wonton skin.
  • Rotate the siew mai and squeeze it at the midsection.
  • Press down the meat with a spoon or a bamboo paddle to level it.
  • Flatten the base of the siew mai so that it can sit steadily on the steamer.
    Once you have folded the siew mai, store them in the fridge/freezer immediately for later or steam immediately, otherwise the skin will dry out, affecting the texture of the dumpling

Steam and Serve!

Wontons in wooden basket with chilli sauce at the side

Place the siew maiin a bamboo steamer and steam over high heat with lid on for 10 minutes. Serve hot topped with a wolfberry.

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