Supernormal's finest dumplings and buns

By
Sarah Gamboni
Added
09 September, 2016

Having spent years living in Hong Kong and Shanghai, Andrew McConnell brings a modern edge to Asian recipes.

Drawing inspiration from China, Japan and Korea, his menu at Supernormal in Flinders Lane runs the gamut of light and refined (sea bream with daikon and ginger at the raw bar) and rich and gutsy (slow-cooked Sichuan lamb shoulder).

While Andrew has been turning out stellar pan-Asian fare for years, it wasn't until the launch of Supernormal in 2014 that he felt confident in jumping on the dumpling bandwagon:

"Conscious of the idea of a white person cooking Asian food and wanting to dodge any association with fusion cooking, I stayed clear of some of the more traditional dishes that I really loved — dumplings being the most obvious example. I was certainly qualified to cook dumplings — I had eaten them pretty much every day for five years while in Hong Kong and Shanghai, and had been taught to make them by experts in their own homes — but I was still working out exactly what it was I wanted to do. What I wanted to do, it turns out, was Supernormal."

Today, you'll find a swag of dumplings and buns, including the cult-status lobster roll in a buttery brioche bun, DIY twice-cooked dug legs with steamed bread pockets, lacy potsticker dumplings, and juicy prawn and chicken wontons in a slick of spiced vinegar.

They’re just some of the 89 recipes from the Supernormal cookbook now live on Cooked.com.au. Why not start your own bun fight this weekend?  

Lobster roll

Andrew says: “This is the only recipe at Supernormal that travelled with us from Golden Fields. It’s one of the most popular dishes we make and we’ve kept making it because I suspect there might be a riot if we tried to take it off the menu. There’s something about the way the kewpie mayonnaise and the bun get together that just seems to hit a particular bliss spot. Local lobster, freshly cooked is really the only way to go here. If you don’t want to cook the lobster yourself, you can get it from your fishmonger — just check ahead so that you can be sure it has been freshly cooked.”

Potsticker dumplings

Andrew says: “This is a very traditional Shanghai dumpling and the closest we serve at Supernormal to a purely authentic dumpling. When cooking Chinese food, I always try to keep in mind that, while it might be my take on a dish, the final product has to remain respectful of the source."

Twice-cooked duck legs with plum sauce and steamed bread

Andrew says: This is an interactive dish that requires some pre-thought but is easy at the serving end of the process because your guests finish the preparation by constructing their own bao.”

Prawn and chicken dumplings with spiced vinegar

Andrew says: “We serve up to 2000 dumplings a day at Supernormal and these prawn and chicken numbers, our riff on a traditional Chinese recipe, are one of our bestsellers. The spiced vinegar recipe makes more than you will need for the dumplings, but it keeps well in the refrigerator and can be used to enliven all sorts of Chinese dishes.”

Try more tried-and-tested recipes from Supernormal

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