We all have a favorite comfort food (or two) and my husband’s is wonton soup. Originally from the cold and rainy Northwest, his cravings start kicking in just as the post-Labor Day chill sets in. Yes, it does get cold in Vegas, wide temperature swings are a part of desert living. While we are fairly new to this vibrant town, we lived in the high desert of Lake Tahoe for many years, and have grown accustomed to quickly shifting from swim suits to hats and gloves, all within the same day.
Anywho, I thought I would surprise him with my first attempt at Wonton Soup. I altered the recipe from Semi-Homemade Cooking with Sandra Lee. She calls for 1 packet of oriental sesame dressiing mix. While we eat a ton of Asian-inspired food, this isn’t a regularly stocked item in our house, so I simply omitted it with no sacrafice. Also, while I usually have oyster sauce on hand, I was out, so I used tamari (soy sauce) instead. Also, the original recipe was for steamed wontons. A quick boil in some basic broth is all that is needed for your basic wonton soup, no bamboo steamer required. Okay, one last thing, the recipe calls for pork, certainly the best meat for wontons, but they do not sell any antibiotic-free pork in my area, so I use ground turkey instead. It is a fair substitute.
While this recipe can easily be prepared in a veggie broth, I am very curious on any ideas to veganize wontons. The egg can easily be omitted from this recipe. My husband had never used egg in any wontons he had made before, but I wanted to try this recipe. However, really, what can you fill these little wrappers with to sort of keep that wonton soup like experience? I would be curious to give it a whirl for fun if anyone has an idea.
Just in case you were wondering, it was good. Not as salty as the restaurant types, no msg of course, but a nice soothing meal nonetheless. If you like a saltier hit, add a bit of tamari/soy sauce to the broth.
- 1 pound ground turkey (the lean kind) or pork
- 1 (5-ounce) can water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
- 1/2 cup scallions (green onions), finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon jarred minced ginger
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 egg beaten
- 2 tablespoon oyster sauce or soy sauce or tamari
- 1 (16-ounce) pack wonton wrappers
- 1 quart chicken or veggie broth (I like the organic ones from Pacific Foods)
In a large bowl mix pork/turkey, water chestnuts, scallions, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, egg, and oyster sauce or soy sauce/tamari. Fill center of each wonton wrapper with 1 teaspoon of meat filling. Gather wrapper up and twist to secure sides. Brush the edges of the wontons with water to help seal. Fill a pot with 1 quart of chicken broth and an additional cup of water. Add the wontons and boil until the wonton skins are tender (like pasta). If desired, add other seasoning, vegetables (cabbage sliced up and cooked in works well), etc for variations on the basic broth. We like it simple.
To Steam: Arrange cabbage leaves on the bottom of a bamboo steamer. Place dumplings about 1-inch apart and steam until the filling is cooked through, about 20 minutes.