Ham Sui Gok: A Beginner’s Guide

Ham Sui Gok (咸水角) is a famous Cantonese-style pastry. They have surfaces filled with air bubbles, resembling a special leaf. These are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside when you bite into them! Ham Sui Gok is an absolute delight that you should try. This is not just any dumpling, this one is extraordinary! Keep reading to the end to learn how to make one at home.

Introduction of Ham Sui Gok

Salty water corner, or “Ham Sui Gok” in Chinese, is a type of glutinous rice dumpling. They are prepared in a very similar way to traditional dumplings. All the ingredients including meat are wrapped up in a dough and fried. However, this dish is mainly found in the Guangdong area of China, whereas dumplings are more popular in northern China.

The dumpling skin of the southern Ham Sui Gok is made with glutinous rice flour, boiled Wheat starch (Chengmian), lard, sugar, and water. Simple right?

Compared to the diverse range of fillings available for northern dumplings, selections for Ham Sui Gok in the south may be less varied. However, you can expect super authentic yet unique ingredients in Ham Sui Gok. These are pork (pork belly), fat, scallops, sage, Shiitake mushrooms, dried radish, and chopped green onion.

Southern Ham Sui Gok is a distinctive dish, as the main cooking method employed is deep-frying. Dried radish is added for an extra crunchy texture that complements its salty and sweet flavor. This flavor is unique to Cantonese-style tea snacks which are known for their oiliness without being greasy or heavy. It’s a guilt-free snack!

How to Make Ham Sui Gok


  • Water-milled glutinous rice flour
  • Wheat starch
  • Pork meat
  • Dried shrimp
  • Onion
  • Dried radish
  • Dried mushrooms
  • Sugar
  • Oil
  • Water starch
  • White pepper
  • Soy sauce
  • Unsalted butter
  • Cooking oil

When making salty dumplings (ham soi gok), it is best to use tenderloin or pork belly meat for the best flavor and texture!


Bring 30 grams of Wheat starch to a boil in water then knead it into small pieces.
ham sui gok step 1
Mark as done
In a pot, add 210 grams of water-milled glutinous rice flour. Then add 30 grams of unsalted butter, 30 grams of caster sugar, and the cooked Wheat starch. Add cold water to the batter in three increments. Knead the batter until it is smooth.
ham sui gok step 2
Mark as done
Cover the prepared batter with a plastic wrap then refrigerate for 4-8 hours Note: it is much easier to wrap dumplings with frozen dough).
ham sui gok step 3
Mark as done
Prepare the filling for the salt water horn by cleaning and chopping the meat, dried radish, dried mushrooms, dried shrimps, and scallions. (Note: dried mushrooms and shrimps should be soaked in advance). Heat a spoonful of oil in a pan, then sauté the meat with dried radish, mushrooms, and shrimps. After cooking through, add more oil to the pan with water starch, pepper powder and light soy sauce for taste.
ham sui gok step 4
Mark as done
Stir-fry all the ingredients with sugar. Now remove the pan from the heat. Allow the dish to cool before mixing in freshly chopped scallions. Stir until completely combined and set aside.
ham sui gok step 5
Mark as done
Knead the batter until it is smooth, then portion out into small even-sized pieces. Flatten each piece and add a spoonful of filling in the middle. Next, fold the edges up, and knead it into a water corner shape. Place on a plate.
ham sui gok step 6
Mark as done
Bring the oil in your pot to a temperature between 70-80%. Once it reaches that point, start deep-frying your Ham Sui Gok. You will know when they are done when they float down and turn golden brown with a crispy texture.
ham sui gok step 7
Mark as done

Tips for making Ham Sui Gok

  1. In order to make the perfect dumpling skin, it’s essential to incorporate cold water into your recipe. This helps mix together unsalted butter and glutinous rice flour while ensuring that the dough won’t crack while forming. The secret recipe for salty water corner is the golden ratio of 7:1:1:1 of sticky rice flour to clear flour, fine sugar and oil.
  2. The salted water horn can be filled with an array of ingredients to suit the tastes of your entire family. Pork, chicken breasts, dried radish or crispy horseshoes – the options are endless! You even have the flexibility to switch up fillings as often as you’d like.
  3. For perfectly golden crunchy salty water horns, remember to use chopsticks and continuously roll them in the hot oil for an even cooking.


Q: Where is Saltwater Cape a specialty?

A: Salt water corner is a common traditional dish in Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau.

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