Saturday, June 19, 2010
Shanghai Shepherd's Purse Wontons
Now, I know when people think 'wonton' they jump to the image of the Cantonese pork-stuffed dumplings found either in soup or deep-fried and crispy (think Panda Express). But of course, Mom is a Shanghai girl, and the only wontons she will ever make are Shanghai style. And, of course, anything Shanghainese is bound to have the infamous Shepherd's Purse vegetables native to that part of China. I think the real wonton is supposed to be stuffed with a mixture of ground pork and shepherd's purse, but Mom's version is a bit healthier, with a higher percentage of veggies and the addition of shrimp.
I'm still not very clear on Mom's exact filling recipe. I don't even think she knows her exact measurements because whenever I watch her make it, she just throws things in, tastes, and throws more things in.
Shanghai style Shepherd's Purse Wontons
-4 pounds ground pork
-2 pounds diced shrimp (keep them in chunks!)
-1 handful dried shrimp (shami), diced
-1 bunch baby bok choy, blanched and minced
-1 package frozen shepherd's purse, minced
-10 shiitake mushrooms, diced
-1 bunch green onions, diced
-4 tbsp ginger, diced
-6 tbsp soy sauce (or more, to taste)
-~4 tbsp sesame oil (or more, to taste)
-8 packs square wonton skin (medium thickness)
-Water to seal the edges
-Flour for dusting
-~5 giant trays for freezing
*Note: I'm NOT exactly sure about this recipe. Like I said, Mom just kind of adds by trial and error, so the best thing to do is to approximate, make and cook one wonton, then adjust based on what you find lacking.
1. Mix all filling ingredients, then stir in ONE DIRECTION until the mixture thickens. For some reason, that's the main trick. Otherwise, the filling actually doesn't really thicken. Trust me, I've learned from experience.
2. Have ready a tray dusted with flour.
3. Get one wonton wrapper, line the edges with a thin coating of water, then place about a teaspoon of filling (add a piece of shrimp for each wonton!) in the middle. Fold the wonton (seriously...I just can't explain how to fold them. I'll put up a tutorial at some point).
3. Roll briefly in the flour, then place on the tray. Repeat until the tray is full.
4. Place the tray in the freezer for further eats, then after about 3-6 hours, take them out and store in a large ziploc bag. To cook frozen wontons, add them to a pot of boiling water, then add an additional amount of water each time it comes to a boil again. Do this three times, then fish out.
5. For fresh wontons, just add to boiling water, then fish out when they float.
6. Serve in chicken broth with cilantro and green onion, or as a cold dish with vinegar or peanut sauce.
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