Learn how to cook like a Jamaican by trying your hand at these simple gluten free boiled dumplings. Such a basic recipe, multi purpose and only requires 3 ingredients and no more than 20 minutes of your time.
These dumplings come together in no time and are great to use in most recipes. If you want to embrace true Jamaican culture then don’t skip this recipe, it’s a must and not complicated!
Boiled dumplings or boiled dumpling as Jamaicans would call them.
One fun fact about Jamaicans is that we tend not to pronounced the S for plural words i.e plantains is plantain but for the sake of search terms/blogging I had to change it up but I won’t bore you with all that spiel.
Anyway, dumpling – fried or boiled play an important part in Jamaican and certain Caribbean islands culture. I recently added Cassava Dumpling as well as Cornmeal Dumpling to the blog.
It is a multi purpose food that can be served in soup, for example I used it in my Jamaican Chicken Soup or it can be served as a side dish with your Cabbage and Saltfish or even with the national dish which is Ackee and Saltfish.
You can shape your dumpling 2 ways – discs or like little sausages and these are known as spinners. Only the boiled ones are called spinners.
On the other hand, the fried version is made with cornmeal and known as festival.
Ways to eat your dumpling
In other words you can ….
- Serve as a side dish with hard food/ground provision (these are root vegetables).
- Add them to soup
- Add them to stews
- Eat them alone without other veggies i.e salt fish and dumpling
- Have them with stewed peas (beans)
You can pair them with most recipes but fish, vegetables and peas tend to be the most popular choice. Growing up we would make our boiled dumplings with wheat flour, either plain or self-raising flour to be precise.
I also tried spelt flour before focusing more on the gluten/dairy free niche.
Ingredients you will need
- Gluten free flour: Use the flour of your choice, see the list below of recommendations.
- Water: No dumpling can be made without some water.
- Pink salt: Used purely for taste.
How to make boiled dumplings
- Fill a large stock pot or saucepan with water (about ¾ full) and add ½ tsp of pink salt then bring the water to a boil (Picture 1 ).
- Meanwhile, place the flour and the other ½ tsp of pink salt to a medium sized bowl (picture 2).
- Slowly add the water and knead until a dough ball is formed. The dough shouldn’t be sticky, if it is sticky add more flour and if it is too dry, add a splash of water then re-knead (picture 3-5).
- Pinch off about a golf ball/fist sized amount of dough, roll into a ball and then flat it (about ½ inch)(picture 6)
- Then use your thumb to make a dip in the centre. If you are making spinners then roll your dough into a sausage shape instead. Repeat this step with the rest of the dough (picture 7-9).
- Carefully lower each dumpling into your pot of water and boil for 15 minutes (picture 10 & 11).
- After the given time you will notice the dumpling floating towards the top of the water (picture 12).
- Remove with a slotted spoon
- Serve accordingly.
The best gluten free flour to use
Thankfully these boiled dumplings are one of the easiest to replicate especially if you are using a store brought flour blend like.
Here are some recommended brands
- Krusteaz Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Blend
- King Arthur Measure For Measure Flour
- Bob Red Mill 1 to 1 Baking Flour
- Buckwheat Flour (Any brand will do)
I personally like Bob Red Mill and buckwheat flour. I rotate between both depending on what I’m making and for whom.
Buckwheat is gluten free, don’t be confused by the name it derives from the rhubarb family. This flour is whole grain, completely unadulterated and is the equivalent to whole wheat flour of the gluten free world.
If you do use buckwheat flour just be mindful that your dumplings will be more on the dense side and grainy in texture.
It’s a trade off in a sense, do you want a flour that’s independently wholesome yet dense or one that is blended for a light texture? I don’t know, it’s down to preference!!
I’m Caribbean but not wheat free, can I still make the dumpling?
Yes, this recipe will work with another flour if you choose to use a different kind.
Notes and tips
- The amount of dumpling made will vary depending on the size. I managed to make 7 in total.
- If using buckwheat flour just keep in mind that the dumpling will be more dense and grainy
- Keep your pot of water boiling at all times, especially while making the dough.
- Never make your dumplings with water that isn’t hot, this will compromise the texture.
- It’s always best to keep your finger nails short when making dumpling.
- If you are making your dumpling for a stew or soup then add them accordingly just ensure they have at least 15 minutes to completely cook through.
- If you want to make an even amount simply cut your dough ball into even portions.
Recipes to try your dumpling with
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