A History of Dumplings

A History of Dumplings

The delightful dumpling – whether it’s steamed, boiled, fried or baked, this little pocket of Asian wonder has brought happiness to people for centuries. Made with meat, vegetables, fish or sweets there are a lot of reasons to love these little bundles. But it brings one question to mind. Who came up with the idea for the ingenious dumpling?

It all started with a man called Zhang Zhongjing, nicknamed the ‘Medical Saint.’ Legend goes that he returned to his hometown in winter to find a case of frostbite around the ears of the villagers. To cure the frostbite, he wrapped mutton and medicinal herbs in dough skin and fed them to the sick. The recipe was supposed to warm the skin and promote blood flow. Another bonus? They were really tasty.

These little morsels of good health were named Jiaozi, and are now a well-known tradition for Chinese families from the period of Winter Solstice up until New Year’s Eve.

Jiaozi were the original inspiration for the combinations of dumplings we know and love today. No longer will you see just a simple combination of mutton and chilli, but a whole range of meats ranging from pork to crab, and fresh vegetables and aromatic spices.

Dumpling Republic has a diverse range of dumplings, steamed to pan-fried, meat-filled to vegetarian. Check out the menu here.