Miso Eggplant Gyoza


You can never go wrong with dumplings. Prep the filling—here, a miso-infused roasted eggplant (Nasu dengaku, a fixture on many Japanese menus)—ahead of time so they come together quickly. Even better, you can freeze extras in zip-close bags to thaw and enjoy anytime you’re craving a Japanese-inspired lunch. Don’t forget the soy sauce for dipping and a sprinkle of crunchy sesame seeds.

Yields 4 servings

INGREDIENTS:

1 tablespoon mirin

2 tablespoons sake

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ cup white miso paste

1 teaspoon finely grated ginger

6 Japanese eggplants, halved

1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons sesame oil, divided

About 30 gyoza wrappers, defrosted

Soy sauce and sesame seeds, for serving

METHOD:

Preheat broiler to high.

Place the mirin, sake, sugar, miso and ginger in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes and set aside.

Brush the cut side of the eggplants with 2 teaspoons sesame oil. Place, cut-side up, on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Broil for 4 minutes or until lightly golden. Brush with the miso glaze and cook for a further 6 to 8 minutes or until golden and the eggplant is cooked through. Let cool, then finely chop.

To make the gyoza, dry your hands completely (or wrappers will stick). Place a gyoza wrapper on one hand and put 2 teaspoons filling in center of the wrapper. Brush edge of half the wrapper with cold water. Make a semi-circle by folding the wrapper in half. Pinch open sides of wrapper together with your fingers and seal the top.

Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over high heat and cook the gyoza for 2 minutes, without moving them. Pour ½ cup water into the pan and quickly cover with a lid. Cook for 1 minute, then give the skillet a few firm shakes to help remove any stuck on bits. Cook for 1 minute more, or until the water has evaporated and the wrappers are cooked. Serve with soy sauce and sesame seeds.

SERVE WITH:

Green Salad and Lemon Vinaigrette (from the book)

Smashed Cucumber Salad (from the book)

DO AHEAD:

Make the filling, 5 days ahead

Extra gyoza can be frozen in zip-close bags, up to 2 months


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