Best potstickers EVER

because I made them from scratch for the first time. Alton Brown inspired me this time (I know, NOT Bobby!), since I recently watched the episode of Good Eats on cooking with wonton wrappers. (If Bobby Flay is my TV boyfriend, Alton is my TV best friend. I think he and I would get along splendidly.) I fantasize sometimes about eating Trader Joe's vegetable potstickers (basically little dumplings that you fry in a pan), since I've had them twice but can't find them anywhere around here, so this was a perfect thing for me to learn to do. After watching Alton make some potstickers with pork, then some steamed dumplings with tofu and vegetables, I took the best of both worlds and made potstickers with tofu and veggies. Here's my basic procedure, though as usual, I didn't really measure anything and more went on what I had available and also how things looked on his show when he was getting it all together:

Vegetarian Potstickers

-half a package of tofu, drained (with water squeezed out on a towel) and diced into 1/4-inch cubes
-half a zucchini, grated
-1 carrot, peeled and grated
-half of a small bell pepper, diced
-about 1/2 inch of ginger root, peeled and minced
-2 green onions, diced
-5 or 6 small mushrooms, thinly sliced
-soy sauce (2 to 4 teaspoons)
-sesame oil (about 2 teaspoons)
-teriyaki or hoisin sauce (2 to 4 teaspoons)
-black pepper
-1 egg, beaten
-1 package of wonton wrappers

Combine all filling ingredients except egg in a large bowl, taste, and adjust seasonings as necessary. When the seasoning is as perfect as you think it's going to get, add the egg (unless you want salmonella, in which case you can add it before you taste everything). Put about a teaspoon of filling in the middle of each wonton wrapper, then brush edges with water, seal while pushing out excess air, and crimp to keep filling from leaking out. If you're doing a large batch, place finished dumplings under a damp towel while you work with the rest. Heat a small amount of oil in a large sauté pan, add a layer of potstickers (8 or 10), and cook for 2 minutes without touching them. Add hot water to about halfway up the sides of the potstickers (it will sizzle and pop when mixed with the oil, so watch out), cook an additional 2 minutes, then remove potstickers from pan and serve with dipping sauce. I mixed together some peanut sauce, soy sauce, and rice vinegar for dipping, but whatever kind of Asian sauce/herbs you like would probably work well. If you're cooking more than one batch, dump water out of the pan between batches, and keep cooked potstickers covered in foil in a 200-degree oven until ready to serve. Uncooked potstickers can be frozen on a cookie sheet (so they don't stick together) then kept in a sealed bag until ready to cook.

A few notes:In the words of Alton Brown, "I bid you good eating."

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I love Alton Brown. He is one of my very favorites- if not my most favorite.
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