The Chinese call these Guotie, the Japanese call them Gyoza, and in the US, we tend to call them potstickers. When I am eating them, I am not so particular about what they are called; I am focused on how much I enjoy eating them.
If you have never had them, they are made with a circular skin and are then filled with a mixture of some sort, typically ground meat, and or vegetables. They are then sealed by pressing the edges together or by crimping them. They are usually served with a soy/vinegar dipping sauce. They are one of those things that are amazing to eat and seem complex to prepare but they are not. Usually when I make them, I make several dozen at a time, as they do not last long in our house. My favorite recipes for making gyoza are at http://www.food.com/recipe/japanese-gyoza-41660 and for guitoe (Chinese pot stickers) at http://www.food.com/recipe/chinese-pot-stickers-13320. While both recipes are time consuming, they are better then the guitoe you will find at most Chinese restaurants.
Guitoe remind me of little purses with buried treasures within. When I eat them, I am reminded of a scripture from the New Testament in 2 Corinthians 4:7 about how we are like treasures in clay jars to show that our power is from God, not from us. The taste contained through the combination of these ingredients is something, which is greater then the sum of its parts. When you look at them, it is like looking at a clay jar, they do not seem like anything special. Then you bite into them, and the treasures buried within them come alive. Each of us is like guitoe. Not everyone sees the treasures buried within us, until they take a moment to develop a relationship with us and get to know what is buried inside.
You can tell a lot about these little dumplings, which is what they are, by how they are folded. According to Wikipedia, each country has its own folding technique. “Korean ones are wrapped around the center, giving a round chubby look, Chinese ones are folded length-wise and sometimes pushed in on the edges, giving an elongated or square-ish look, and Japanese are always pleated giving a folded fan look.” Each of has our own techniques by which we embody the treasures and tools which our Higher Power has given us. What we fill ourselves with and the thickness of the skin with which we wrap ourselves makes a statement about who we are, what we have been through, and where we are heading in our lives.
Guotie have not just been known as sources of nutrition, but also sources of healing. According to Wikipedia, the first mention of guotie in literature dates back to the Song Dynasty (960–1280 AD) in ancient China. This writing describes guotie “as being exceptionally good for the human soul.” While I am not sure why this was said, what I have learned from my relationship with them is that they remind me to take time to observe, experience, and enjoy the treasures revealed to me through the foods I eat and the people I meet in my life.