Magic Dumpling/ Gyoza Formula

A friend asked me for my dumpling recipe, I never payed much attention to the exact measurements of the ingredient of my dumplings, neither did any old chinese woman. But we have to start somewhere, don’t we? This guide works for Gyoza also, the difference between these two kinds is the thickness of the skin and the wrapping method. It can be filled with any ingredient, though tradicionally it is with ground pork.

You have to select a cut from the pork that is neither too fat or too lean — pork loin, pork chops, pork belly — ask the butcher to ground it once.

The egg in the recipe works as a binding agent, crumbling meat is not desirable in there. The amount of all ingredients is freestyle and all ingredients are raw. I’ll give you a base recipe and other options to play around, but it is totally ok if you don’t add anything else to the basic recipe. This is only a rough guide, feel free to release your cooking genie. Old grandma didn’t need scales or spoons, let’s assume her success came from magic.

Each dumpling/ gyoza only needs around 1-2 tsp of filling, this will render A LOT, the ones you can’t eat right away:
1. Sprinkle a tray with flour so they don’t stick;
2. Either store in the fridge for 1-2 days maximum or store in the freezer for 3-4 months maximum.

Basic filling
around 500g/ 2 cups ground pork
1 egg
4-6 tbsp Chinese cooking wine (you can substitute with white wine or vodka)
2-4 tbsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt (if the flavour is too plain you’ll have soy sauce later when it is cooked, so no worries)

minced spring onions or chinese leeks (if you don’t like neither, supress them from your recipe)
minced pawns (same amount as picture)
minced shiitake mushrooms (same amount as picture)
minced white part of leek (in case you don’t have chinese leeks, twice as much as chinese leeks)

**Dumplings, gyozas, huntun, whatever you like, rely on fresh ingredients and the natural juices that are absorbed by the skin, my dad used to scold me “don’t you wrap so much meat in there, is all about the skin! *arghararar*”. So don’t try to suffocate the taste of the meat with too much veggies, nor try to make a undercover meatball.

***There are many other fillings, including vegan and vegetarian, but that’s another post.


Sopa de Feijão e Couve Lombarda

1 Lata de Feijão Encarnado cozido
1 Courgette grande
Batata (opcional)

Couve Lombarda cortada
Abobora (pouca)

2 Cenouras
2 Cebolas médias

2 Dentes de Alho
Alho françes
1/2 Caldo de Carne
Pimenta q.b.
Pimentão Doce q.b.

Realizar um refogado com o azeite, as cebolas picadas, os dentes de alho e umas rodelas de chouriço. Depois juntar o courgette cortado em pequenas porções, a batata, a cenoura, a abobora e 2/3 da lata de feijão. Misturar tudo deixando refogar um pouco.
Depois juntar a agua até os legumes ficarem cobertos e temperar com sal, pimenta, e pimentão doce. Juntar ½ caldo de carne. Deixar cozer e depois triturar tudo. (Se a sopa se encontrar muito espessa, acrescentar a água quente necessária)
Juntar a couve cortada, e um pouco de arroz. Ter o cuidado de mexer frequentemente, para não deixar pegar ao fundo. Quando o arroz estiver quase cozido junte o resto da lata de feijão, e apague o lume.
Bom Apetite!

Empada de espinafres e cogumelos portobello Vegana I Spinach and portobello mushroom empada Vegan friendly

When we have spinach at home it is always me who has to exterminate it in some tasty way.
This time I’m going for a empada, some sort of tart?, amongst the Portuguese and Brazilian is quite popular. They have a reason to it! They are easy to make, portable and tasty. Great when you are in a rush, if you want a light meal.

I’ve searched a bit and changed it a bit 🙂

makes 3 small empadas, you can just double 1 triple that!

5 pre-made Shortcrust Pastry
3 garlic cloves
3 tbsp of virgin olive oil
approximately 200 grams of spinach leaves (two handfuls)
3 portobello mushrooms
Salt, ground nutmeg, black pepper
2 tbsp soy milk(optional)
2 tbsp of your favourite vegan cream cheese!

1. Turn the oven to 210°C and Place the portabello mushrooms on the grilling tray until it smells good, about 10 minutes. Take out the mushroom and cut into small cubes.
2. Cook garlic in the olive oil with low heat, when soft and golden throw in washed, drained spinach leaves. You should hear sizzle~ add satt, nutmeg, black pepper to taste. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms.
3. When the excess water has been evaporated, it should be a little moist though, add soy milk, blend. Correct seasonings if desired. Cook for about 7 minutes until it resembles a paste, so, it shouldn’t have much water, stir in the cream cheese and set aside.
4. Grease a cupcake form with olive oil, place the 4 of the pastry sheets, cut the remaining sheet into 4 equal parts, will work as the “lid”.
5. When the filling is cooled down, pour the filling in the pastry “shells” and cover the shell with the oil brushed lid (you can use the excess oil from the pan) gently closing the pastry together with your fingers.
6. Place the empadas in the oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the filling stops bubblingand the crust is nice and golden and crunchy!


Vegan Spinach Spaghetti Sauce

I was looking for a simple recipe to use my spinach on. Since the woman who cooks only knows how to boil vegetables. Boiled spinach leaves a unconfortable feel on the teeth. Horrible, just horrible.


3 handfuls of spinach leaves

1 medium nicely chopped onion

1 cup of tomato sauce

2 cloves of garlic roughly chopped

1 natural soy yogurt

1 pinch of salt (to taste)

1 teaspoon of oregano (to taste)

¼ teaspoon of black pepper (to taste)

¼ teaspoon of dried basil (to taste)

  1. On low heat, heat the olive oil in a sauce pan, careful to not go over the smoking point, add in the chopped onions and garlic. Cook about 5 minutes until soft and translucid.
  2. Add the tomato sauce, add a pinch of salt, black pepper, oregano, basil to taste. Mix occasionaly for 3 minutes until the sauce has thickened, feel free to add more sauce!
  3. Meanwhile, roll the spinach leaves and thinly about half centimeter. And toss the spinach into the pan. Stir, and cook until the water from the spinach has evaporated.
  4. Add the soy yogurt, combine altogether

Serve with spaghetti or boiled vegetables! Eat it with bread. Feel free to reduce the tomato sauce and add more yogurt for a lighter version.

Fresh vegan pumpkin soup

I know summer is heading and, potencially, pumpkin soup is going to feel kind of heavy in the stomach, but i love it. I tried to make up a fresher/lighter version of the winter soups. It is a little tiny bit sour because of the lemin juice which is just on the point, the peppermint and the lemon juice and other vegetables make the soup to taste fine.

3 servings
500g pumpkin
2 big carrots
1 thin eggplant
2 onions
2 tbsp ground walnut (i just hammered it)
2 cups of water
1 tbsp Lemon juice
2 pinches of Salt or to taste
3 tsp sugar
5 tblsp Olive oil (or to taste)
A pinch of basilic (to taste)
A pinch of pepermint (to taste)
2 tsp Black pepper (to taste)

Hands on!


1.Preheat oven 170C (350F)

2.Chop the pumpkin, about 3 cm wide, no need to remove then skin, it will come off easily, after the roasting. Sprincle 2 pinches of salt over the pumpkin, olive oil, basilic, peppermint, black pepper. Roast for about 30 minutes, then add the carrots, eggplant, onions bake for another 15 minutes.

3. Prepare your food processor,  put the baked good in the cup , then add 2 cups of water, sugar, 1 tbsp salt (or to taste) lemon juice. Blend until desired consistency. You can add more water if you prefer.

Hope you enjoy!

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup

Absolutely delicious! My mother loved the soup, I was afraid to spoil the lovely butternut squash that presented itself before me, but no, it became a very happy (?) soup.

i browsed around the internet in order to get some ideas to make the soup. And this is the combo that turned ok.

5 servings


1 medium butternut squash (chopped about 5cm wide for better flavour and faster cooking)

2 medium potatoes (chopped)

1 carrot (chopped)

1 onion (chopped)

1 cube of vegetable stock

1 liter of water

3 tbsp sunflower seed oil (or whatever vegetable oil)

4 tbsp salt (or to taste)

6 cloves (freshly grounded)

freshly grounded blackpepper (to taste)

1- Preheat oven 170 C. Then put about 6 tbsp of sunflower seed oil a tray, put the squash over it. Sprinkle the salt over the squash evenly, do the same with the ground cloves. Cook until tender, about 30 minutes or more.

2-heat pan and add 3tbsp sunflower seed oil. Throw the potatoes, carrot and onion in and let it sit for about 5 min in small fire.

3- Boil the water. Pour the water in the pan and add the stock cube. Stir well. cook until the potato is tender (generally it takes most time to be cooked)

4- Pour everything in a food processor, along with the roasted squash (ignore the (slightly) carbonised ones, they sre not good for your health, or for the soup’s taste)

Depending on the vegetable stock you use the taste is going to vary. Mine was fine. Hope yours is too.

Bon apétit