Gyoza is a dumpling that derived from China. Gyoza dumplings is now a popular food among Japanese, but only from the beginning of Showa period (1926-1989) people started to eat gyoza dumplings.
After 1940 when Japanese soldiers were stationed in China during World War II (1939-1945), some of them brought back the recipe of the Chinese boiled dumpling to Utsunomiya city, Tochigi prefecture, where is now well known as the city of gyoza dumplings.
The difference between Japanese gyoza and Chinese gyoza is that Japanese gyoza dumplings use much more garlic. It is because Japanese gyoza dumplings used to use mutton meat which the smell is strong, so garlic was added to reduce the smell.
Regular gyoza dumplings uses skin made from flour that wraps the filling, which contains ingredients such as ground meat, cabbage, leek, and garlic. The round skin is normally folded into semicircular shape.
“Yaki-gyoza” is the most popular type of gyoza made in Japan. It is first fried on a hot pan, and after that, water will be added to steam. The gyoza skin is crispy on the flat side, and the folded side is moistly.
“Sui-gyoza” is another type of gyoza which is boiled. This type of gyoza dumplings is more similar to Chinese dumplings. The skin used for “sui-gyoza” is more thicker than that for “yaki-gyoza,” so that the dumpling will not fall apart while boiling.
Gyoza is a popular dish at ramen restaurants, and Chinese restaurants. However, you can also find chilled or frozen gyoza at supermarkets too. Nowadays, the quality of frozen gyoza is almost same as the gyoza served at restaurants.