Chefs' Recipes

Kazuki's prawn and chive dumplings, sake butter and ponzu

Plump prawn parcels, enriched with that sake butter, and balanced with that citrus-y ponzu.

By Kazuki Tsuya
  • 1 hr preparation
  • 30 mins cooking (plus standing)
  • Serves 6 - 8, Makes 25 dumplings
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"We normally use Moreton Bay bugs in these dumplings but prawns work really well too," says Kazuki Tsuya, head chef at his eponymous Melbourne restaurant Kazuki's. "You don't need fancy prawns; even frozen prawns are OK."


  • 1 kg green king prawns, peeled and deveined
  • 1 long red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
  • ½ bunch chives, finely chopped
  • 1½ tsp finely grated ginger
  • 10 gm tapioca flour
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 25 wonton wrappers
  • 8 large iceberg lettuce leaves, torn into 10cm pieces
  • Fried shallots and spring onion curls, to serve
  • 20 gm dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 100 ml Japanese soy sauce
  • 100 ml yuzu juice (see note)
Sake butter
  • 200 ml cooking sake
  • 150 gm chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1cm cubes


  • 1
    For ponzu, soak mushrooms in 200ml of boiling water (2 hours). Remove shiitake. Combine 100ml shiitake soaking water in a bowl with soy sauce and yuzu juice (makes 300ml).
  • 2
    For dumpling filling, cut half of the prawns into rough 5mm pieces and place in a large bowl. Process remaining prawns in a food processor until almost a paste. Transfer to bowl with chopped prawns and add remaining ingredients. Season and mix until well combined. Working with a wrapper at a time, place 1 tbsp filling in the centre, brush edges with water and bring the four corners together and seal the edges, pressing out as much air as possible, forming a cross on the top where the edges join. Transfer to a large tray lined with baking paper and refrigerate, uncovered, until ready to cook (makes 25).
  • 3
    For sake butter, bring sake to the boil in a small saucepan over high heat and reduce by three-quarters (10 minutes). Remove pan from heat, gradually add butter, piece by piece, whisking until melted and emulsified. Season to taste and keep warm until ready to serve. Do not overheat or the sauce will split.
  • 4
    To blanch lettuce, bring a large saucepan of water to the boil over high heat. Blanch lettuce for 10 seconds until just wilted then refresh immediately in iced water. Drain and pat dry. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Reserve pan of water on heat.
  • 5
    To cook dumplings, reduce boiling water to medium heat; the water should be simmering not boiling. Add 10 dumplings and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the dumplings float (4 minutes). Once dumplings start to float to the surface, cook for a further 2 minutes or until cooked, and then drain. Repeat with remaining dumplings.
  • 6
    To serve, divide lettuce among plates and top with dumplings. Spoon over sake butter and scatter with fried shallots and spring onion curls. Serve with ponzu on the side.


Yuzu juice is available from Asian and Japanese grocers and selected supermarkets. If unavailable, substitute lemon or lime juice.