Wednesday, April 04, 2012

wonton soup

Wonton Soup - Serves 4-6
(based on the recipe from the Williams-Sonoma - Soup of the Day cookbook)

For the wontons:
1/4 lb. ground pork, chicken or shrimp (or a combination of all three)
1 1/2 tsp. peeled + grated fresh ginger
2 T. chopped water chestnuts
1 1/2 T. chopped green onion, white part only + 1 green onion, green part only, diced (reserved)
1 T. chopped fresh cilantro
1 T. soy sauce
1 t. rice vinegar
1 egg
salt + ground pepper
24 wonton wrappers
5 shiitake mushrooms, stems removed + thinly sliced
6 c. chicken broth
1 c. baby bok choy leaves (on the bigger leaves, thinly slice)
1 carrot, peeled + cut into small, thin matchsticks

To make the wontons, in a food processor, combine the meat and ginger and process to a smooth paste. Add the water chestnuts, green onion (white parts), cilantro, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and egg. Season with salt + pepper and process until a smooth paste forms.

Working with 1 wonton wrapper at a time, place it on a work surface and moisten any 2 edges with cold water. Place 2 tsp. of the filling in the center and fold in half into a triangle. Press the edges firmly to seal, then fold the two outer points across the top of the mound and pinch the edges together. If they do not stick, moisten with a little water. Repeat until all of the filling is gone.

To prepare the soup, bring the broth to boil in a large pot over medium heat. Once boiling, add the filled wontons. The wontons are fully cooked in about 3 minutes, or until they begin to float. Add the bok choy leaves, carrot and mushrooms and simmer for 2 minutes. Salt + Pepper to taste.

Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the diced green onions you reserved earlier. Also, I made some chili oil and put a few drops of chili oil to garnish as well. It added a nice little bite to the soup, but you could certainly omit this part if you don't like spicy dishes. You could also use a few dots of Sriracha sauce in a pinch or as an option.

Chili Oil:
This will seem like a lot of chili oil for a few drops in your soup, but we use it for many things at our house. For just a few ideas: Try it for oil for fajitas or brush it onto homemade pizza dough before baking on your pizza stone. Mmmm... delicious!

Bring 1 c. of extra virgin olive oil to a simmer. Remove from heat and add 1/4 c. crushed red pepper flakes. Stir, let cool and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. Oil will congeal, so bring it out of the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before using. ;)

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