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Shrimp Rice Noodle Roll (Ha Cheung)

The rice noodle is delicate and tender and tastes very much like shrimp rice rolls from a dim sum restaurant because it's a recipe from NYC's 100 year old Nom Wah Restaurant. I had such a great time making and eating the shrimp rice roll recipe from The Nom Wah Cookbook by Wilson Tang and Joshua David Stein. Copyright 2020 Wilson Tang. Excerpted by permission of Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins. 

Servings 6 rolls
Author Wilson Tang, The Nom Wah Cookbook

Ingredients

Sweet Dipping Sauce for Cheung Fun

  • ½ cup light soy sauce
  • ¾ cup dark soy sauce
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • teaspoons oyster sauce
  • teaspoons chicken powder

Shrimp Rice Roll

  • cups rice flour
  • 3 tablespoons tapioca starch
  • 1 tablespoon wheat starch
  • 1 tablespoon potato starch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • cups lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon oil optional*
  • Neutral oil for greasing the pan (I put a couple of tablespoons in a mug with a pastry brush)
  • 36 medium (41-50 count) shrimp peeled, deveined, and patted dry**

Instructions

Make the sweet dipping sauce

  1. Heat a small saucepan to medium-low heat and add all ingredients. Stir until sugar and chicken powder are dissolved. Set aside until ready to serve atop rice rolls.

Make the Shrimp Rice Rolls

  1. Sift the rice flour, tapioca starch, wheat starch, potato starch, and salt into a large bowl. Mix in the lukewarm water, stirring until a consistency of very thin glue is reached (and the batter is smooth).

  2. Set up a steamer according to the instructions on page 10 (see note below).***
  3. When ready to cook, mix again until there are no clumps. Using a brush, generously oil a rimmed quarter sheet pan. Using a ladle, pour just as much batter in the pan as needed to form a thin, even layer. (The thinner you can keep your roll, the better.) (Sharon’s note: use about ¾ cup of batter for a 9x13 pan)
  4. After you pour the rice slurry into your pan, put 6 shrimp onto each roll, placing them 1 inch from the edges. Place the sheet pan in the steamer. Steam for 6 minutes, or until you see bubbles on top of the mixture.
  5. Carefully remove the sheet pan from the steamer and set on a work surface (it will be hot, so be prudent). Let cool for a minute or so. Then, using a bench scraper (or a thin spatula brushed with oil), start rolling the rice roll from the top of the pan away from you until folded into a loose roll. Cut in half widthwise.
  6. Brush the pan with oil again and repeat until you’ve used up all the batter.
  7. When ready to serve, briefly re-steam the rolls for 1 to 2 minutes until hot and serve with the sweet dipping sauce.

Recipe Notes

*If you notice cracks in your steamed rice rolls, I found it helpful to add 1 tablespoon of oil into the rice batter.
**The original recipe calls for 18 medium shrimps which will not be enough. You will need 36 medium shrimps, approximately 1 pound. I used 1 pound of 26-30 count large shrimps and used 4-5 shrimps per roll.
***Steam set up notes from page 10: Steaming is perhaps what sets dim sum apart from all other dumpling- loving kitchens of the world. We steam everything at Nom Wah in an industrial Vulcan steamer. At home, I recommend steaming in a wok. Steaming times vary depending on the density and size of what you are steaming. But the general setup to steam in a wok is as follows.
Fill the wok with enough water to come up to the lower rim of the steamer but not so much the waterline is above the food bed. Line the bottom of the steamer with paper or a lotus leaf or something so that the fiddly bits won’t fall through the cracks. (If steaming dumplings or bao, you won’t need to line the steamer.) Place whatever needs steaming in the basket, leaving ample room between items. Bring water to boil and steam for the desired duration. If you need more water— water tends to evaporate— add boiling, not cold water so as not to stop the steaming. If you do want to DIY it, just use a plate in a pot. All you need is tinfoil and a plate that fits in your pot. Fill a pot with 1/2 an inch of water. Then make a sort of tripod out of tinfoil by forming three golf ball– sized balls and placing them in the bottom of the pot, making sure their tops rest above the water- line. Rest the plate on the tinfoil, cover, and steam. This method is especially useful when making rice rolls, in which you’ll be using a cake pan instead of the plate. You can put anything in the steamer as long as it isn’t so small that it would tumble through the holes into the roiling waters below.