Today marks the start of the Chinese Year of the Ram, and thanks to Royal China Restaurants, we’re publishing a delicious DIY Dim Sum recipe for you all to experiment with…

This recipe is by Royal China Canary Wharf’s Dim Sum Head Chef Ka Fai Leong. Go on, be adventurous and have a go!

Makes approx 18 dumplings

Ingredients for the dough
290g plain flour
175ml water

Chinese dumpling wrappers are fairly easy to make at home, but for a shortcut you can buy them from Asian supermarkets. To make the dumpling dough from scratch, sift the flour into a bowl and stir in the water. Knead until the dough is firm but with some elasticity, and then cover with a towel for about 30 minutes. This makes the wrapper more durable, and also makes them taste better. In addition, the dough also gets slightly softer after standing, making it easier to stretch and handle.

On a floured surface, roll the dough into a sausage and slice it into 2cm pieces, rotating the dough between cuts to prevent it from going flat. Squash the chunky cylinders from the edges inwards using a small rolling pin to create the pastry discs.

Homemade wrappers should be used soon after they are made as they will dry out and become brittle, so be careful not to let them stand too long after making the discs. The dough can also be quite sticky, so never stack them on top of each other, and give each dumpling space when steaming them so they don’t stick to each other.

Filling ingredients
8 oz/226g freshly cooked crabmeat
2oz/55g fresh tiger prawns
1 stick celery, finely chopped
1 oz/28g carrot, finely chopped/grated
1 oz/28g fresh coriander finely chopped
1 bottle Chinese XO sauce (a spicy flavour-packed sauce made with dried shrimp, scallops and seasonings including chilli and garlic, available from Asian supermarkets).

To make the filling, mix together the crab, prawns, celery, carrot and fresh coriander in a bowl.
Press your thumb and index finger together at the tips to make a circle. Take a pastry disk and gently place it over the circle of your fingers, just so the wrapper slightly overlaps your thumb and finger.
Place a teaspoon of crab mixture in the centre of the wrapper and push the sides up and around the filling, so the top is still exposed (don’t enclose the dumpling completely).
Take 1 teaspoon of Chinese XO sauce and place on top of dumpling.
Place the dumplings into a bamboo steamer over a pan of simmering water and cover. Steam for 5 minutes, or until the crab mixture is completely cooked through. Remove from the steamer and serve immediately.


Royal China Restaurants will be celebrating Chinese New Year by offering each table a red envelope – and one envelope in each of the six London restaurants will reveal a special gift, a ‘lei see’, which will include a complimentary £100 meal voucher.