The People's Reciplex

Chinese dumplings (jiaozi or wontons), previously known as Con-fucius’ wonton soup

1 lb ground chicken (or any ground meat)
1 T. corn starch
1/2 c. chopped water chestnuts
1/2 c. chopped shitake mushrooms
1/4 c. chopped scallions, plus more for garnish
2 c. thinly chopped napa cabbage, salted to remove excess water and moisture and drained
1 T. chopped garlic or to taste
soy sauce
sesame oil
red pepper flakes and/or chili oil (a brand called Lao Gan Ma’s black bean paste is the best)
one pkg. wonton wrappers (square, 100)
Work cornstarch into ground chicken with clean hands. You can substitute ground pork or meat substitute or shrimp or cellophane noodles and tofu.
Add water chestnuts, scallions, napa, garlic, mushrooms and anything else (carrots, cellophane noodles, spinach, etc.) and mush around with hands until blended. Add tablespoon or two of soy sauce if you like.
Prepare small bowl of lukewarm water. Wet a paper towel and wrap over the pile of wonton wrappers to keep them moist.
Spoon or chopstick small blob of mixture (one tablespoon or so) onto moistened (not wet) wonton wrapper.
Fold wonton in half into a triangle, using water to seal the sides. Then bring the the two longer points together and cross and pinch lightly to hold the shape, using water again. Fold, rinse, repeat 100x or until you run out of wrappers or mixture.
Bring large pot of water to boil, enough to cover the dumplings. I wouldn’t do 100 at once, but you can try. A rousing boil for 5-7 minutes, remove with a flat strainer.
Put sesame oil and chili oil (if you have it) in a small pan and heat carefully. Put scallions, red pepper flakes (and garlic, if you wish) and a tablespoon or two of soy sauce at the bottom of each bowl and pour the hot oil on top to bring out the flavors. Add dumplings and a little dumpling water to make a broth.
Eat with chopsticks and a big dumpling spoon. Don’t burn your mouth. And in our venerable Chinese culture, Con-fucius say blow on dumplings slurp soup okay.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 16th, 2002 at 6:30 pm and is filed under soups.


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