Siomai (Steamed Pork Dumplings)

The Philippines has been greatly influenced by Chinese cooking since the time of Chinese trading with the Philippines. In fact many Filipinos are partly Chinese; me, case in point is partly Chinese. Siomai or steamed pork dumpling is Chinese in origin. This recipe is Chinese in origin with a slight twist; the exchange of rice in place of wonton wrapper. The reason for this exchange is that sometimes the wonton wrapper gets soggy and looks wilted; whereas the rice makes the Siomai look always fresh.

My first encounter with ‘siomai’ was when I was a grade schooler at the Assumption Convent in Manila. The nuns sold these dumplings bought from the famous “Ma Mon Luk” restaurant during the school fairs.


Siomai Ingredients:

  • 500 grams ground pork
  • 250 grams shrimps – steamed, peeled and cut into tiny cubes
  • 1/2 cup carrots – peeled, cut into tiny cubes 1/8-inch size
  • 3/4 cup water chestnuts or singkamas – cut into tiny cubes (water chestnuts preferred)
  • 1/4 cup spring onions – finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup pork luncheon meat (Spam) or ham – cut into tiny cubes
  • 3 pieces dried black Chinese mushrooms – soaked in hot water till soft, drained, stems removed, and cut into tiny pieces or 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh Shitake mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon seat salt
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup cornstarch (corn flour)
  • 1 cup rice – soaked in water for 1 hour and drained or 50 pieces wonton wrappers
  • 1/2 cup frozen green peas (optional for decoration)

Siomai Procedure:

  1. Wear plastic gloves and, with hands, combine all the ingredients except rice or wrapper and peas, until well blended.
  2. With hands, shape mixture into 1 1/2-inch balls and roll in rice until the whole ball is covered with rice.
  3. Set aside on a tray until all the balls have been rolled.
  4. Place a pea on top of each ball.
  5. Arrange the dumplings in single layer in an oiled basket steamer or line steamer basket with ‘katcha’.
  6. Have two inches of water in the bottom layer of steamer and bring to a boil.
  7. Place the steamer basket on top and steam dumplings for 20 to 30 minutes or until the dumplings and rice are cooked.
  8. Serve with the dipping sauce.

Dipping Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon calamansi or lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (Tabasco or Chili sauce)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Dipping Sauce Procedure:

  1. Mix together in a small bowl and use as dipping sauce for Siomai.


  • Wrap the cover of the steamer with ‘katcha’ to prevent the dumplings from getting soggy specially if you are using wonton wrappers.
  • This is good for ‘merienda’, or as appetizer or ‘pulutan’.


  1. This is such a clever idea!!! I am making this soon! One of my child has wheat intolerance so making this with rice is such a superb idea! Can I omit the egg whites? If yes, what is a good substitute? She is also allergic to eggs.

    Thank you,


    • You can try to substitute cream for the eggs. I have never done it this way, but it might work, since I use milk/cream to bind my hamburger patties.


  1. Siomai (Steamed Pork and Shrimp Dumplings) – Tita Meg Cooks - […] This recipe also appears in […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *