Spicy Rice Balls
Photo: Leigh Beisch; Styling: Dan Becker
Yields Makes about 32 dumplings
Often known as “porcupine balls,� these dumplings aren't common on dim sum carts, but their intense flavor and easy preparation made them a hit in our test kitchen. Prep and Cook Time: 40 minutes, plus 2 hours of soaking time for rice.

How to Make It

Step 1
1

In a medium bowl, soak rice in 2 cups water for 2 hours. Drain; put on a plate.

Step 2
2

In a medium bowl, combine pork, egg, soy sauce, sugar, green onions, ginger, and chile. Cover and chill until rice is ready.

Step 3
3

Divide pork mixture into 32 pieces. Roll into balls, then roll balls in rice. Put balls in parchment-lined steamers (see “How to Steam Dim Sum,� below). Cook until rice is tender and pork is cooked, about 10 minutes. Serve immediately.

Step 4
4

How to Steam Dim Sum: Measure your steamer basket and choose a pot with a diameter at least 2 in. wider. To keep dumplings from sticking, cut a circle of parchment paper 1 in. smaller in diameter than the basket (so steam can flow up around the edges) and fit it in. Pour enough water into pot to come 1 in. up side and bring to a boil over high heat. Fill basket with dim sum first, then set it in the pot. Cover and cook, adding hot water as needed.

Step 5
5

Note: Nutritional analysis is per ball.

Ingredients

 1/2 cup short-grain, sweet, or sticky rice
 1/2 pound ground pork
 1 egg
 2 tablespoons soy sauce
 1/2 teaspoon sugar
 5 green onions, finely chopped
  One 1-in. piece ginger, peeled and finely shredded (about 1 tbsp.)
 1 bird's eye or serrano chile, seeded and minced

Directions

Step 1
1

In a medium bowl, soak rice in 2 cups water for 2 hours. Drain; put on a plate.

Step 2
2

In a medium bowl, combine pork, egg, soy sauce, sugar, green onions, ginger, and chile. Cover and chill until rice is ready.

Step 3
3

Divide pork mixture into 32 pieces. Roll into balls, then roll balls in rice. Put balls in parchment-lined steamers (see “How to Steam Dim Sum,� below). Cook until rice is tender and pork is cooked, about 10 minutes. Serve immediately.

Step 4
4

How to Steam Dim Sum: Measure your steamer basket and choose a pot with a diameter at least 2 in. wider. To keep dumplings from sticking, cut a circle of parchment paper 1 in. smaller in diameter than the basket (so steam can flow up around the edges) and fit it in. Pour enough water into pot to come 1 in. up side and bring to a boil over high heat. Fill basket with dim sum first, then set it in the pot. Cover and cook, adding hot water as needed.

Step 5
5

Note: Nutritional analysis is per ball.

Spicy Rice Balls