Leftovers. I love them. But after the first lunch or second dinner of leftovers, I get a little tired and crave variety. So, what do I do? Make a repurposed leftover dish. In this case, mashed sweet potatoes and baked apples become apple sweet potato dumplings. Thanksgiving doesn’t know what hit it.
Dumplings, potstickers and wontons are a great way to use up leftovers. Whether you have vegetables, grains, or even a bit of meat, you can mince everything up and combine it together for dumpling filling. While these apple sweet potato dumplings are wrapped and folded in a Chinese fashion, other cultures have their own versions of dumplings as well. Think samosas, tortellini, ravioli, empanadas, momo. I could go on.
One of the elements I love about these apple sweet potato dumplings is how they don’t really follow a recipe. If you have a lot of extra sweet potato or a lot of extra apple, your dumplings will still be delicious. And I encourage you to use leftover cranberry sauce from your Thanksgiving dinner. Dip your sweet potato dumplings into the cranberry sauce as is, or thin out your sauce with a bit of extra water or orange juice.
For me, leftover recipes, like this sweet potato dumpling, this vegetable chowder, and this leftover Thanksgiving breakfast strata are guidelines and ideas rather than exact recipes. You’ll get at least 24 dumplings from the below quantities, but if you fill them a little more, or you make egg rolls, or you have less apple or sweet potato, you’ll still get a delicious pocket of leftover Thanksgiving goodness.
If you have leftover wrappers, you can also try this ginger cabbage dumpling recipe. Or just make it a dumpling dinner.
Apple Sweet Potato Dumplings
For the dumplings
- 1 package wonton wrappers
- 1 cup mashed sweet potato
- 1 cup baked sliced apple
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
For the cranberry sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 3/4 cup orange juice
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 16 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
- 3 tablespoons fresh grated ginger
Assemble the dumplings
In a small bowl, mix together the mashed sweet potato, baked apples and cinnamon. Mash together until well combined.
Spoon about 1 tablespoon of filling into the center of a wrapper.
Use your finger to wet the edges of the wrapper with water.
Fold wrapper in half to create a little pocket and pinch the edge of the wrappers together. Working from one side to the other, pleat the wrapper with small, accordion folds until the dumpling is sealed. Pinch the pleats together to ensure they stay closed.
Place on a parchment lined tray and cover with a wet paper towel. The parchment reduces sticking and the paper towel prevents them from drying out while you’re wrapping more dumplings.
Repeat with remaining wrappers and apple sweet potato filling.
Cook the dumplings
Heat a nonstick pan over medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of peanut or sunflower oil. Place dumplings in the pan and let fry about 3 to 4 minutes.
Pour a few tablespoons of water into the pan until the bottom is just covered, exact amount will depend on the size of your pan. Cover with lid and reduce heat to low. Let the dumplings steam for 4 to 5 minutes, until the water has evaporated.
Remove cover, increase heat to medium, and let fry another 1 to 2 minutes until dumplings are golden and crisp.
Repeat with remaining dumplings, frying in batches.
Cook the cranberry sauce
Combine water, orange juice and sugar in a heavy bottomed sauce pan over medium heat. Stir gently until sugar is dissolved.
Add cranberries and ginger and reduce heat to low. Let sit until cranberries soften and burst, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat and serve with dumplings.
Cranberry sauce adapted from Epicurious
I use round potsticker wrappers for these sweet potato dumplings but you can use square ones as well. Keep the unused wrappers covered with a wet paper towel and remove one wrapper at a time. Have a little dish of water (about 1/4 cup) on the side to help seal the wrappers.
This recipe for cranberry sauce is adapted from Epicurious. The full recipe makes more than you’ll need for dipping the potstickers so I encourage you to use leftover cranberry sauce.
While you may have made the sweet potato and apple filling vegan, premade commercial wrappers often use egg or egg whites. You can make you own wrappers with flour and water While the filling of these ginger cabbage dumplings is vegan, the wrappers I used were not. Most commercially available dumpling wrappers contain egg and/or egg whites. Substitute rice paper wrappers or make your own with flour and water.
Purchase gluten free wrappers or rice paper wrappers to keep this recipe gluten free. Or try the wrapper recipe from The Gluten-Free Asian Kitchen.
Check the Fridge
Cooked pear or butternut squash would go nicely with these apple and sweet potato dumplings.
I alternate between making the dumpling dough using this recipe from The Woks of Life and using store bought wrappers because they’re easy and fast. Homemade dough is thicker than premade wrappers which adds to their deliciousness. But premade wrappers speed up the lengthy process. Remember to let the dough rest 1 to 2 hours before rolling out and wrapping. The store bought wrappers are ready to go which is very convenient. Plus, they freeze well if you don’t use the whole package.