Lapsang souchong was first introduced to me by a friend as “bonfire tea”. I was immediately caught by the name. Food can be smoky, but tea like a bonfire? A single sip and I was blown away. The smell alone is enough to get the idea. Lapsang might not be to everyone’s taste. Personally I can’t drink more than half a cup before I feel as though I’ve actually been smoking. This unique flavour is acheived by actual smoking over pinewood. Even if the tea isn’t to your taste, it adds an amazing depth, warmth and, dare I say, smokiness to recipes.
I measure this by volume: just use 4 times flour to water. This makes it really easy to scale the measurements up and down.
2 cups plain flour
0.5 cups boiling water
pinch of salt
Place all of the ingredients into a large bowl and mix to combine.
When the dough forms a ball, tip it onto a clean work surface and knead until elastic. Add a little more boiling water a tbsp at a time as necessary.
Wrap in clingfilm and rest in the fridge for at least half an hour.
300g closed cup mushrooms
1 mug Lapsang Souchong, strongly brewed (4 minutes)
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
2 tsp mirin
Tbsp groundnut oil
2 spring onions
2 clove garlic
thumb sized piece of ginger
Additional tbsp groundnut oil
Heat the oven grill/broiler to 200°C.
Remove the base of the mushroom stalk. Halve the mushrooms, top to base, and place on tin foil. Place these under the grill for 5 minutes until beginning to brown but do not allow to burn. They give off a lot of water so I’d advise leaving the oven door ajar when you take them out to allow some to evaporate.
Place the mushrooms on a chopping board and use two forks to tear the mushroom into strips as you would pull pork.
Set the mushrooms in a colander, sprinkle with salt and set aside to allow some excess liquid to drain.
Set the tea in a small pan and boil for about 3 minutes to begin reducing. Add the soy, sweet chili and mirin and allow to simmer for a further 2 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large wok. Finely slice the ginger, spring onions and garlic and add to the wok. Stir fry these for 30 seconds then add the mushroom. Keep everything moving in the wok as you cook by stirring. Cook the mixture for a further minute then add the tea mix. Cook until the excess liquid has evaporated.
Roll the dough into a 1 inch log and cut them into 1 inch sized cubes. Roll each of these out until they are thin enough that you can see light through them, then use a 8cm diameter cookie cutter to cut into a perfect circle.
Place 1 1/2 tsp filling into the centre of each wrapper and fold the wrappers in half, bringing the edges together, fold into crimps.
Brush with a very fine layer of oil and place in a steamer. Place the steamer over a pan of boiling water for 12 minutes.
Add the additional to a frying pan and heat. Once the gyoza has finished steaming. Place it in the pan and fry for 2 minutes or until the base is crispy.