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Chinese steamed pork and cabbage rolls

Cooking pork requires a gentle hand: it should be done all the way through, but be careful not to overcook it as this can make it dry.

Chinese steamed pork and cabbage rolls
Photo: Natalie Walker


  • 1 knob ginger, peeled
  • 1/2 bunch coriander, including stem and root, washed very well
  • 2 spring onions, chopped
  • 3 shiitake mushrooms, soaked until soft in boiling water, then drained
  • 300g pork mince
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp shao hsing rice wine
  • 1 1/2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • pinch of ground white pepper
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 Chinese cabbage
  • 1 tsp sesame oil a little chinese black vinegar, poured into a dipping dish, to serve


1. In a mortar and pestle, pound the ginger, coriander stem and root (reserving the leaves for garnish) and spring onions to a very fine paste. This can also be done in a food processor; just be sure that the paste is quite fine.

2. Remove and discard the stems of the shiitake mushrooms and chop the mushrooms finely.

3. In a large bowl, mix the pork mince with the coriander paste, the mushrooms, egg, shao hsing wine, soy sauce, pepper, sugar and sesame oil. Mix together well and then, using a wooden spoon, beat until you have a firm ball.

4. Allow to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes while you prepare the cabbage.

5. Bring a large bowl of salted water to the boil. Cut the end off the cabbage so you have big, loose leaves. Cut the inside white part of the leaf away and discard. Drop the leaves, a few at a time, into the boiling water. Remove a few minutes later and cool under running cold water. Drain and pat dry with a kitchen towel.

6. In a little oil heated in a pan, saute a small piece of the pork stuffing to check for seasoning - adjust with a little more soy sauce if necessary. Place a tablespoon of the mixture in the middle of a cabbage leaf and roll, tucking in the edges. Place in a steamer basket and repeat the process until all the pork mince has been used.

7. Just prior to serving, , place the steamer baskets over pots of simmering water and cover with tight-fitting lids.

8. Cook for 10-12 minutes or until just cooked all the way through. Brush rolls with a little sesame oil. 

To serve: Garnish with coriander leaves, and serve with a dipping sauce of Chinese black vinegar.

Main ingredient:
Pork, Cabbage
Starter/Entree, Main-course
Family meals, Dinner Party, Midweek dinner


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