Forget the deep-fried wontons at the greasy Chinese take-out. Nope, these babies are steamed and homemade. Pop one in your mouth and suddenly you’re transported to the streets of Hong Kong with food vendors’ carts of steaming morsels. That’s where my mind goes when I eat these delectable little bites.
I won’t pretend – they’re a little fiddly. More involved than most of my recipes but they’re SO worth it. The filling is easy. That all goes into a food processor. The slow part is filling the wontons. If you’re not in a hurry, it is quite relaxing. I put on some good music, pour myself a wine and get to work.
I start an assembly line with the wrappers, egg and the filling. If you can recruit a helper or two, it makes the process not only go fast but more fun.
When you pinch each wrapper together, enclosing the filling, I’ve found bringing diagonal corners up into the center and pressing them together works best because it allows the wrappers to cook properly (instead of just scrunching them together in the center).
If you don’t have a double layered steamer basket you could try doing small batches in a smaller vegetable steamer, or even try a steamer oven if you’re lucky enough to have one. These bamboo baskets can be found in Asian markets: they’re cheap and last forever. I line them with some parchment paper because these little suckers like to stick (think pot stickers).
Minutes later, you’re rewarded with the most delicious little wontons you’ve ever eaten. Dunk them into the vinegar soy dipping sauce, maybe a little sriracha sauce too. These are really, REALLY good. I promise you. And no deep-frying. They’re worth the bit of fiddliness it takes to make them. Until next time, toodles xo.
A HANDY PINTEREST PIC FOR YOU TO SHARE WITH FRIENDS AND FOLLOWERS
- 5 oz (141g) can whole water chestnuts, drained
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro (coriander)
- 4 green onions, trimmed and roughly chopped
- 1 inch (2.5cm) piece ginger, peeled & coarsely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 2 tablespoons dry sherry
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- pinch salt & pepper
- 11 oz (311g) medium-sized peeled & deveined raw shrimp (about 24 shrimp)
- 12 oz (340g) package wonton wrappers*
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- sliced green onion, for garnish
- DIPPING SAUCE
- 1/3cup rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon chopped green onion
- 1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
- To make the sauce: Combine all ingredients in a small dish.
- Place water chestnuts, cilantro, green onions, ginger, garlic, sherry, soy, sesame oil,
- cornstarch, sugar, salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Process until finely chopped. Add shrimp and process until shrimp are finely chop and mixture is well combined.
- Place three to four wonton wrappers on a work surface. Keep remaining covered so they don’t dry out. Place a flat tablespoon of mixture into center of wonton wrappers. Brush around the edge of each wrapper with egg. Bring wrapper up into the center and press together firmly to seal. Make sure the edges are firmly together. Repeat with remaining wonton wrappers, shrimp mixture and egg, keeping assembled wontons and the wrappers covered.
- Line a 10-inch (25cm) round, tiered bamboo steamer basket with a piece of parchment paper. Using a skewer, poke holes over the parchment paper to allow the steam through to cook the wontons, about 20 or so holes should do it. Arrange wontons. Repeat with another layer of basket, parchment paper and wontons. Cook, covered over a wok or large saucepan of boiling water for 8 to 12 minutes or until wrappers are tender and filling is cooked. I usually test one at 8 minutes, another at