Preparation / Directions:
Soak the mushrooms in warm water for 30 minutes, covered.
To make the filling, remove the mushrooms from the water and squeeze dry. Cut off the stems and discard. Finely chop the caps and place in a bowl. Add the pork, shrimp, bamboo shoots, soy sauce, chicken stock, cornstarch, salt, sugar, white pepper and sesame oil. Stir to mix well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or as long as overnight.
Place 1 tablespoon of the filling in the middle of a wrapper. (If using wonton wrappers, trim the corners with scissors to make rounds.) Bring the edges of the wrapper up and around the filling. With your index finger and thumb, pinch tiny pleats around the sides to form a straight-sided fluted basket. Tap down the filling to firm it up and leave the top open-faced. Wrap your index finger around the midsection to give the basket a waist, then tap the bottom of the dumpling against the countertop so that it flattens slightly and can stand on its own. Set on a baking sheet, cover with a sheet of waxed paper and continue making the dumplings with the remaining wrappers and filling.
Bring a wok half full of water to a boil. Grease the bottom of a bamboo steaming basket or a heatproof plate with vegetable oil. Arrange the dumplings in the basket or on the plate, keeping them separate. Set the steaming basket in the wok or the plate on a rack in the wok; cover and steam over (not touching) the boiling water for 15 minutes.
Remove the basket or plate from the steamer and serve the dumplings hot or at room temperature. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat by steaming for 5 minutes or place in a microwave for 1 minute on high power.
Makes 48 dumplings Preparation Time: 4 hours 45 minutes