You probably already know about udon, thick and springy noodles made from wheat flour. You also likely know gyoza, dumplings usually filled with ground meat and vegetables. But have you heard of udon gyoza?
In today’s Japanese Recipe Adventure, I’ll show you how to combine both for udon gyoza— crispy on the outside, soft on the inside and incredibly addictive. They’re a delicacy in Takatsuki, Osaka, and after our easy recipe, you’ll be whipping them up in a snap.
This makes about 20 udon gyoza. When choosing your udon, it’s easiest to buy refrigerated. If buying frozen, defrost before use. I would not recommend dried udon, as it won’t have the same chewy texture.
For the udon gyoza
- 250 grams of ground beef
- 10 spring onions
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 inch of ginger
- 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons of potato starch
- 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
- A pinch of sugar
- 1.5 teaspoons of freshly ground black pepper
- 2 eggs
- 540 grams of udon noodles
For the dipping sauce
- 1 teaspoon of rice vinegar
- 3 teaspoons of soy sauce
Everything needs to be cut up small. All the “filling” should be minced or grated, and the udon themselves should be cut up into bite-sized pieces. It’s a bit like making a patty. First, you’ll mix everything together and then cook it on a hot pan in small circles.
- Make the dipping sauce by combining the rice vinegar and soy sauce, then set it aside.
- Mince the spring onions, and peel and grate the ginger and garlic.
- Cut up the udon into bite-sized pieces.
- Beat the eggs thoroughly.
- Combine all of the above ingredients in a bowl. Add the beef, soy sauce, potato starch, sesame oil, sugar and pepper. Mix thoroughly.
- Pour a small amount of vegetable oil into a pan or pot and let it lightly coat the base of the pan.
- Make the gyoza by scooping some mixture out with a spoon and forming a small patty with your hand.
- Lay the gyoza onto the pan without letting them overlap.
- Cover and cook for three minutes on medium heat.
- Remove the lid to flip each patty, then place the lid again and cook, covered, for another three minutes.
- Flip the gyoza one more time, and cook uncovered for two more minutes or until crispy. Serve with your dipping sauce.
Patience is key
The moment you place an udon gyoza paddy onto the heat, you’ll be greeted with deliciously tempting meaty aromas, and you’ll want to quickly plate them up as soon as they’re cooked through.
While you can do that, I strongly recommend you follow the instructions here and flip them again so they get beautifully crisp on the outside. The crispy outside contrasts with the soft and chewy inside, making them tastier. It’s a bit more waiting, but it’s worth it.
How’d it turn out?
This makes a big batch, so I like to just make them all in one go and pile them on top of each other to keep them warm, but you can make them in small batches.
Serve on their own or with the sauce. I like to eat mine with white rice and miso soup (if you don’t mind the extra carbs).
Have you ever come across udon gyoza before? Let us know in the comments below!