Shanghainese Lion’s Head Meatballs

Shanghainese Lion’s Head Meatballs

recipe image

Shanghainese Lion's Head Meatballs

Photograph by James Ransom
  • Prep time
    20 minutes
  • Cook time for dinner
    1 hour
  • Serves
Creator Notes

Here’s a recipe handed down from my noteworthy-grandmother on my father’s facet — he missed these so grand when my family came to the United States that he taught himself to cook dinner factual to win them yet again. They are, in many suggestions, the epitome of Shanghainese cooking: flavorful however no longer overwhelming, appetizing-sweet, with pretty of shaoxing wine for added depth. Very best warming comfort food. Will maintain to you prefer to maintain a saltier or extra intense flavor, elevate the amount of soy sauce and sesame oil. —Cynthia Chen McTernan

Take a look at Kitchen Notes

WHO: Two Red Bowls is a Brooklyn-based licensed expert who likes to cook dinner.

WHAT: An legit, comfortable meatball you’re going to furthermore no longer be in a status to win enough of.

HOW: Mix, form, fry, steam, exhaust.

WHY WE LOVE IT: These meatballs are factual easy delectable, however they maintain two issues in particular working to win them sizable comfortable: three eggs as an different of two, and present process a like a flash steam on bok choy at the discontinue of cooking. We’ll grab seconds, please. —The Editors

  • Take a look at Kitchen-Accredited

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  • 1 pound

    ground pork

  • 3 tablespoons


  • 1 teaspoon


  • 1 tablespoon

    shaoxing cooking wine, mirin, or sake

  • 2 tablespoons

    soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon

    sesame oil

  • 1

    inexperienced onion, chopped finely

  • 1 teaspoon

    minced ginger

  • 2

    cloves of garlic, minced (up to 3)

  • 3

    excellent eggs, overwhelmed (2 whenever you happen to desire to maintain extra impregnable meatballs)

  • 1/4 cup

    inexperienced bean starch (if unavailable, cornstarch will work factual handsome)

  • 1 pound

    bok choy, stems trimmed however in every other case intact

  1. Mix every part however the eggs, starch, and bok choy together in a excellent bowl and mash vigorously until neatly-blended. I factual use my fingers.
  2. Add the starch and mix with a fork (I withdraw the fingers-on advance at this level since the starch makes it somewhat sticky). Beat the eggs and add, mixing yet again to encompass. The aggregate will seem extraordinarily liquid before every part — factual continue to combine and the egg will continuously take in into the pork, leaving a thick porridge-love combination. Will maintain to you prefer to maintain rounder and additional impregnable meatballs that you just’re going to form at the side of your fingers, use two eggs as an different of three. I believed this yielded meatballs that had been handsome and comfortable, so I archaic three.
  3. Pour about 1/4 cup of oil proper into a excellent wok, or enough to coat the backside with about 1/2 plod of oil. Flip the warmth to medium and give the oil a cramped while to warm up. Using a 1/4-cup measuring cup or a excellent ice cream scoop, fall balls of the pork combination into the wok in a single layer. Let sizzle within the pan for 2 to 3 minutes or until browned, then flip and cook dinner the diversified facet. Once the meatball is browned on every facet (it doesn’t will maintain to be cooked thru), grab away with a slotted spoon and online page apart. You are going to likely maintain to fry in two batches.
  4. Once the general meatballs are browned, line the backside of a excellent pot with the bok choy leaves. Space the meatballs on top and flip the warmth to medium-low. Duvet and let steam for 30 to 40 minutes, or until bok choy leaves maintain wilted and the stems are comfortable. Serve with rice!

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