February 06, 2008

Wonton Soup

wonton filling:
1/2 lb ground pork
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 1/2 tablespoons shaoxing
1 1/2 inch knob ginger, minced
1 small bunch green onions, minced

wonton wrappers

8 cups chicken, pork, mushroom or shrimp stock
1 2 inch knob ginger, sliced
4 dried shiitake mushrooms, sliced
3 tablespoons shaoxing
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 cloves garlic, halved

to serve:
diced green onions
sliced char siu
1 bunch green onions

Mix all of the wonton filling ingredients together. Place a teaspoon of filling in the center of each wrapper. Moisten the edges. Fold the ends together to form a triangle. Fold the two sides together. Repeat. Place finished dumplings on a plate and cover with a clean, dry towel. Meanwhile, bring all of the soup ingredients to a boil. Drain out the solids, return to stove. Add the dumplings, the now rehydrated mushrooms and char siu to the broth. Discard the rest of the solids. Cook until the dumplings float and are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Ladle into individual bowls, sprinkle with green onions.

Yield: 2-4 servings

My thoughts:
Matt's been wanting to make homemade wonton soup for a while now, and since I like especially like making homemade versions of takeout favorites it sounded like a good project to me. I picked up a package of frozen wonton wrappers during my most recent trip to H Mart so (for once!) we didn't have to make the wrappers from scratch. That really cut down on the work it took to make the wontons. Now the soup does require a bit of work: making the char siu, making the wontons but none of the work is particularly time consuming and quite a bit of it can be done the day before. I made some wonderful homemade stock the day before, so all I had to do was add some additional flavors to compliment the wontons when it was time to make the soup. It would be even easier if you used store bought broth. The char siu needs to be marinated overnight, so to make the soup Matt just had to cook and slice it. The dumplings came together in a matter of minutes using the premade wrappers. We only needed to make 25-30 dumplings to have enough for a really wonton filled soup. All in all, it didn't take much more than half an hour to make delicious homemade wonton soup. We had a large bowl of it as a meal (with lots of pork and wontons) but it would also make a great appetizer soup.