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Bánh Giò on a banana leaf on a plate next to chili and a dish of fish sauce.
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5 from 1 vote

Bánh Giò (Vietnamese Pork Pyramid Dumplings)

Try your hand at making Bánh Giò! Learn how to make the dough from scratch, then master the wrapping technique for that signature pyramid look!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Wrapping Time1 hr
Total Time2 hrs
Course: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Snack
Cuisine: Asian, Vietnamese
Servings: 8
Calories: 243kcal
Author: Jeannette

Equipment

  • Steamer
  • tongs

Ingredients

For The Dough

  • 1 US cup tapioca starch
  • 1 US cup arrowroot starch (or substitute for tapioca flour)
  • 1 US cup potato starch
  • 1 US cup rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp chicken bouillon powder
  • 8 US cup chicken and pork stock (or water with 1 tsp chicken bouillon powder)
  • 1 tbsp oil (plus more for rubbing onto the leaves)

For The Filling

  • 500 g / 1.1 lb ground pork/pork mince
  • 40 g / 0.09 lb rehydrated woodear mushrooms
  • 20 g / 0.04 lb rehydrated shiitake mushrooms (thinly sliced with stem removed)
  • 3 red shallots (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 sprig scallion/spring onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp sugar (or to taste)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp pepper
  • 1 tsp chicken bouillon powder
  • 2 tbsp cooking oil
  • 1 can quail egg (we get it canned from Asian supermarkets, but you can get fresh ones too)
  • banana leaf

Instructions

Making The Dough And Filling

  • Heat up a wok or pan on high heat, then pour in 2 tbsp oil. When hot, turn the heat to medium and throw in the chopped onion and red shallots.
  • Stir for 30 seconds or until fragrant, then turn the heat to high and add in the ground pork.
  • Break the pork up and stir. Mix in the sugar, salt, chicken bouillon powder, pepper and fish sauce, then cook for 3 minutes or until 80% cooked.
  • Add the woodear and shiitake mushrooms and scallions/spring onions in, then stir for another 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it cool as you work on the dough.
  • Stir together the tapioca, potato and arrowroot starches with the rice flour, salt, pepper and chicken bouillon powder in a large mixing bowl.
    Note: You can also mix them together in a large pot as you will be cooking it in there.
  • Pour the stock over the flour mixtures, stir until it has become liquid and add the oil in. Make sure that by the end, there is no resistance from the starch as you mix.
  • Transfer the mixture into a large deep pan or wok and turn the heat up to medium-high.
  • Stir using chopsticks until it starts to produce strands when you lift up the chopsticks, then increase the stirring speed until the liquid forms a sticky dough.
  • This will take about 10 minutes. When it has formed a paste, let it rest as you prepare the banana leaves.

How To Wrap The Dumpling

  • Bring a pan of water to a boil, then gently dip the each separate leaf into the hot water. Use tongs to take it out, then wipe both sides dry.
    Repeat for every banana leaf until you have a stack of leaves ready for the wrapping.
  • Take one leaf and rub a thin layer of oil on both sides, then rotate it to make a diamond. Make sure the side with no lined ridges is facing up.
  • Fold the bottom part up until it makes a triangle. If there's a section left with no overlap, that's okay.
    Pro Tip: If you have thick banana leaves, then using one layer will work. But if they're on the thinner side, I like to use two by laying them on top of each other to make the wrapping thicker and more secure.
  • Fold the triangle in half again to make a smaller triangle.
  • Open the triangle up and hold the point securely in your hand. Make sure that there is no hole at the bottom for any filling to leak out. The opening should form an enclosed circle to keep everything inside.
    Pro Tip: Lightly oil the opening so the dough doesn't stick.
  • Dip a metal spoon in oil, then scoop 1-2 tbsp dough and pour it into the banana leaf. Use the back of the spoon to spread the filling out and push it into the point.
    Note: The amount you scoop will depend on the size of your leaf. Some will fit more, some less.
  • Push a quail egg into the center.
  • Scoop 1-2 tbsp of the ground pork filling onto the dough.
  • Dip the spoon into oil again, then scoop 1-2 tbsp of the dough on top. Spread it around to cover all the mince.
  • Fold the bottom corner up to seal the dough. This will also form the base for the Bánh Giò.
  • Fold the left part of the leaf in. Make sure it's tight against the filling.
  • Bring the right flap in and fold it to seal the base.
  • Get the loose flap at the top and tuck it into the opening just behind it.
  • Repeat the pyramid folding and filling steps until each Bánh Giò is complete.
  • Set up a steamer and put them all in to steam for 20 minutes or until cooked.
  • Let the Bánh Giò cool, then enjoy as is with a homemade Vietnamese Dipping Sauce (Nước Mắm)!

Notes

  • Avoid overstuffing. This will make it harder for the banana leaf to wrap around the filling, which could leave holes and allow the batter to ooze out as it steams.
  • Use plastic wrap. Wrap the Bánh Giò with plastic wrap so they stay secure in their shape while steaming.
  • Coat the banana leaf in oil. Be generous when you cover the leaves in oil before the filling goes in so it comes apart smoothly when it's time to eat.
  • Break the ground pork up finely. The smaller the pieces, the more surface area to absorb more flavor
  • This recipe uses chicken and pork stock, but you can substitute it for water and 1 tsp chicken bouillon powder if you don't have any readily available to you.
  • For the arrowroot starch, it can be substituted for tapioca flour in equal amounts.
  • For the filling, the main ingredients are the woodear mushrooms and ground pork. The quail eggs and shiitake mushrooms are optional, but a great addition if you have them on hand.
  • You can find banana leaves in the frozen section in Asian grocery stores.

Nutrition

Calories: 243kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 46mg | Sodium: 786mg | Potassium: 291mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 28IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 1mg