SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – What time is it? It’s “Dumpling Time” and there is a chef in San Francisco who has mastered the art of making the perfect dumpling.
Born in the Philippines and raised in Central California and Alaska, Edgar Agbayani grew up surrounded by various food cultures, from the farmlands of Delano to the bountiful fishing villages off the coast of Anchorage. He learned the basic of what makes great food starting at a young age, from the simplicity of handmade ramen and udon noodles at his first restaurant job, to how to select the best fish when he worked at a fishery in Kodiak. His eagerness to learn more about food ultimately brought him to the Scottsdale Culinary Institute, from which he graduated in 2000. This education in proper cooking techniques, combined with his robust food background, cemented his love for cooking and set him on an unwavering career path.
Edgar joined Desert Island Restaurants in 1999, working as a line cook at Roy’s Scottsdale. He went on to become sous chef and then executive chef for Thaifoon restaurant (now Ling and Louie’s), also in Scottsdale. During his time with Thaifoon, he was an integral part of their research and development team, implementing standard operation procedures, recipe development, and restaurant openings including Thaifoon in Irvine, California. After Thaifoon, Edgar returned to Roy’s as sous chef in 2003, working in the kitchens at the Scottsdale, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Desert Ridge, Woodland Hills, Chandler, and Newport Beach restaurants.
In 2007, Edgar became Chef Partner of Roy’s Rancho Mirage, followed by five years as chef partner at Roy’s Newport Beach beginning in 2009. Here he not only managed a $4.5 million restaurant, but also the research and development team, and won partner of the year in 2010 and 2011. Edgar joined Roy’s San Francisco in 2014 as chef partner, while also serving as Roy’s West Coast regional chef where he oversaw labor efficiencies, food costs, chef training for 11 West Coast restaurants, recipe creation and much more.
Agbayani also has worked with TaDa Catering, which is the premier caterer for Van’s Warped Tour, Coachella, Stagecoach, and other large music festivals throughout California. He has cooked for all levels of talent, from stagehands, bands and VIP guests, to A-list artists such as Jay-Z and Beyoncé.
When Edgar is not busy running the kitchens for Omakase Restaurant Group, he enjoys watching his favorite sport teams on ESPN. He likes to explore San Francisco with his wife during his days off and when time allows, they enjoy traveling to other countries to experience other wonderful cultures and unique food scenes. We met at Dumpling Time in San Francisco recently for our Foodie Chap chat. Chef put me to work, giving me the opportunity to match his dumpling artistry…I tried. To eat here is to take a vacation to dumpling heaven.
Dumpling Time has it all: pan-seared, well-stuffed, crispy-skinned gyoza (my favorite) to steamed dumplings, xiao long bao (explosions of joy) to noodles and more. Chef has kindly shared his Gyoza recipe (see below). The time is now to visit Dumpling Time for lunch or dinner 7 days a week. Your dumpling craving tummy will be seriously satisfied by a chef with serious talent for the art of it all.
Enjoy our tasty talk fueled by dumplings with a local craft brew to wash it all down.
Served with gyoza sauce and chili butter sauce
Makes 20 gyoza
Yield: 1 lb.
- 11 oz shrimp, Black Tiger (peeled and deveined)
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar, granulated
- 1 T potato starch
- pinch white pepper, ground
- ½ tsp sesame oil
- 3 oz bay scallop
- 2 oz crab meat
- 2 T cilantro, chopped
In a food processor, start by processing the thawed shrimp until slightly smooth. Transfer shrimp to a mixing bowl. Add in salt, sugar, potato starch, white pepper and sesame oil. Fold in cilantro, scallops and crab meat, mix until fully incorporated. Reserve until needed.
- 20-25 pieces – spinach gyoza wrappers (available at Asian grocery stores)
- 1 lb. seafood mousse filling
- 2 T potato starch, plus more for dusting
- 1 c. water
- 1 T soybean oil
- Make the potato starch slurry by combining water with 2 tablespoons potato starch.
- Fill each spinach wrapper with 1 tablespoon seafood filling. Wet the top of each wrapper so that you can fold pleats on the half-moon side. Place each one on a parchment sheet dusted with potato starch.
- Once assembled, add a 1 tablespoon of oil to a non-stick pan placed over medium heat. Once oil is hot but not smoking, lay the gyoza in the pan along with 3 tablespoons of slurry water. The water will create steam and make a crunchy exterior texture. Cook gyoza for 4 minutes each in an uncovered pan, or until medium-brown crust has formed.
- Serve gyoza immediately with Chili Butter Sauce and Gyoza Sauce for dipping.
Chili Butter Sauce
- 4 T white wine
- 2 T white wine vinegar
- 4 T heavy cream
- ¼ lb unsalted butter
- ½ tsp togarashi seasoning
- Bring white wine and white wine vinegar to simmer in a small sauce pan. Once warmed, add in heavy cream and cook until mixture is reduced down to about half, stirring occasionally.
- Slowly whisk in the unsalted butter. Once incorporated, finish with the togarashi flakes. Place in a ceramic dish for dipping.
- 6 T rice wine vinegar
- 8 T low sodium soy sauce
- 1 tsp spicy sesame oil
- pinch togarashi seasoning
Combine rice vinegar, low sodium and sesame oil in a small vessel appropriate for dipping. Sprinkle the togarashi on top, so that it coats the sauce.
For more information, visit:
11 Division Street
San Francisco, CA, 94103