Saturday, August 25, 2012

 The Original Mom’s (Makuahine) Wontons
with Soy Vinegar dipping sauce
Picture compliments of  Cooking Sharades website, visit link:

I have always made my own wontons; store bought just doesn’t do it. It is a bit of a chore so I use two single packages or they also come in double packs. They can be frozen before or after cooking but usually they don’t last long enough to even consider freezing. I learned this skill in Hawaii where I lived out my teenage life and frequently watched my own Makuahine (Hawaiian word for mother) as she worked at making these excellent Pupus (Hawaiian for appetizer or finger food).

The remembered recipe is for the deep fried version noted below. I added the boiled and steamed versions as I like those as well. 

  • Wonton wrappers
  • Vegetable oil for deep frying
For the filling:
  • 1/2 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1/2 lb. ground pork
  • 1 (or two) 4 oz. cans of tiny shrimp, drained and squeezed
  • 1 can water chestnuts, minced
  • 3 scallions, thinly diced with greens
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. ground Ginger
  • 1 tsp. Corn starch
  • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Few drops toasted Sesame oil
For the Soy Vinegar dipping sauce:
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice wine (or red wine) vinegar
  • 2 stalks green onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. ginger, minced
An excellent alternate dipping sauce is Mae Ploy style Sweet Chili Sauce from the Asian section of you neighborhood grocery store; Sweet and tangy, not too spicy. 

For the filling, incorporate ingredients in a mixing bowl, place bowl in fridge to stay cool while preparing work surface for the wrappers.

For the work surface, a cutting board with light dusting of flour works the best. A flat baking sheet lined with wax paper for staging the wrapped wontons.

For wrapping wontons, place a good pinch, about a heaping teaspoon of the wonton mixture in a wrapper and wrap sealing edges with water.

One way to wrap wontons is using your index finger dab some water on the outer rim of the wonton skin and fold the bottom tip to the top tip forming a triangle pinching out as much air as possible and ensuring a proper seal. Dab water to the inside of the left and right tips, fold the tips upward to meet and press together. Tuck the upper tip under the wonton forming a nice little package that will hold together while cooking.

Stage the folded wontons on the wax paper lined baking sheet and keep them covered with a barely damp towel to prevent them from drying out while you are folding the remaining wontons.

For the dipping sauce, in a medium bowl, mix together the soy sauce, vinegar, green onions, garlic and ginger, set aside.

For the deep fried, pour 2 to 3 inches of vegetable oil in a deep pan enough to cover; heat oil until shimmering hot. Gently drop wontons in one at a time until one layer lays across the bottom of the pan being careful not to over crowd. After a few minutes, one by one, they'll each float to the surface and when they do, they're done cooking. Turn them with your slotted spoon as the color turns a light golden brown. Remove them to a platter lined with paper towels. Serve immediately with or without dipping sauce.

For the boiled, bring a large pot of water to a boil or use chicken stock if you would like a little soup with your wontons. Put in the wontons several at a time until one layer lays across the bottom of the pot being careful not to over crowd. Boil for 3 to 4 minutes, when they float to the top they are done. Remove them with a slotted spoon and transfer to a serving dish. Drizzle Soy Vinegar sauce over the wontons or float them in a little of the chicken bouillon soup; sprinkle the sliced scallions and salt & pepper or other seasoning of choice.
For the steamed, if you use a bamboo steamer place the steamer in a big wok that has boiling water. Make sure the the steamer does not touch the water - use a stand. Place the wonton in the steamer, cover and allow to steam for 15 to 20 minutes. If you do not have a nifty bamboo steamer, lightly grease a plate with oil and place the filled wontons on top (without touching one another). Heat 2 cups of water in the bottom of a wok or large saucepan over high heat until boiling. Place the plate on a steamer rack or upturned cup in the wok, cover with the lid and steam for 16 to 20 minutes. Remove the wontons to a serving dish. Drizzle Soy Vinegar sauce in top. 

Picture compliments of  Kitchen Forager blog, visit link:

Picture compliments of Cooking Hawaiian Style website, visit link:

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