International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Siu Mai

Steamed siu mai

(Chinese steamed pork and shrimp dumplings)

Image Creative Commons by pointnshoot

Average: 3.8 (35 votes)

Siu mai (SHOO-my), or shaomai, are popular little steamed dumplings from southeastern China. They are sold by shops as a quick snack food or from carts in dim sum restaurants as part of a larger menu selection.

Makes 20 to 30 pieces


  • Ground pork ground -- 1 pound
  • Shrimp, peeled, deveined and minced -- 1/2 pound
  • Dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in hot water, destemmed and  minced -- 3 to 6
  • Bamboo shoots or water chestnuts, minced -- 1/4 cup
  • Scallions, minced -- 2 or 3
  • Egg, beaten -- 1
  • Cornstarch -- 2 tablespoons
  • Sesame oil -- 1 tablespoon
  • Sugar -- 2 teaspoons
  • Salt and pepper -- to season
  • Wonton wrappers -- 20 to 30


  1. Add all the ingredients except the wonton skins to a large bowl and mix together well with clean hands. You may alternatively use a food processor briefly to bring all ingredients together.
  2. Place about 1 tablespoon of filling in the middle of each wonton skin. Bring the sides of the wrapper up around the filling to encase it like a small basket, leaving the top open and the filling exposed. Pleat the wrapper neatly to form a rounded shape. Press each siu mai down on a countertop to flatten their bottoms. Repeat with the rest of the filling and wonton skins.
  3. Set up a Chinese bamboo steamer and lightly oil the bottom of the steamer basket. Place the siu mai into the steamer (in batches if necessary), cover and steam for about 6 to 8 minutes per batch. Remove from heat and and serve immediately.

Siu Mai Variations

  • Add 1 tablespoon of minced garlic or ginger, or both, to the filling. Other possible additions: 2 tablespoons soy sauce; 1 or 2 tablespoons oyster sauce; 1 or 2 tablespoons rice wine or dry sherry.
  • For decoration, siu mai are sometimes topped with a dab of orange fish roe, a small diced piece of steamed carrot or a pea.
  • Pork and Cabbage Filling also works well for siu mai.

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