Wonton Soup

Wonton soup

I do love a bowl of Asian soup, in its many forms, in fact it’s one of my favourite meals – I’ve had many kinds, in many places, and really can’t ever remember having a bad one. The motivation for making this one yesterday was the discovery of some left over cooked turkey from Christmas lurking in the bottom of my freezer, and the desire to do something a bit different with it.

The soup I made doesn’t follow any kind of traditional recipe, I used this recipe to make the wrappers for the wontons (which I think is a fairly standard wonton wrapper recipe), and looked online for how to shape the wontons, but aside from that I just made it up as I went along (apologies that half the recipe is in cups, and the other is in weight!).

WHAT YOU NEED

For the wonton wrappers:

– 2 cups white flour
– 1 egg
– 3/4 teaspoon salt
– 1/4 to 1/2 cup water

For the wonton filling:

– 150g cooked turkey (you can of course use any other meat if you don’t also have left over Christmas turkey lurking in your freezer. Many wonton recipes use raw ground pork)
– 150g chestnut/brown cap mushrooms
– 4 spring onions (aka scallions or green onions)
– 1 large clove crushed garlic
– 1/2 cup cooked peas
– 2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
– A little butter

For the soup:

– 3 litres chicken stock (nicest if it’s home-made, but bought will work fine)
– 3 tablespoons dark soy sauce (you may need to adjust this up or down depending on the salt content of your stock)
– 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce (this may also need to be adjusted up or down depending on your taste, and the strength of your pepper sauce)
– 1 rounded teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
– 200g cooked turkey (or whatever again)
– 250g bok choy
– 2 carrots

WHAT YOU DO

1. Make the wonton wrappers by sieving the flour into a bowl. Make a well in the centre. Whisk the egg, salt and 1/4 cup water together and pour into the flour. Use a fork to bring it together. Add more water if needed. You’ll need to get your hands in there eventually and make it into a ball. You don’t want a sticky dough, so take care not to add too much water. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for a few minutes until it is smooth and pliable, then wrap it in cling wrap and leave it to rest for at least 30 minutes.

2. While the dough is resting, make the filling. Finely chop the mushrooms (roughly 1/2 cm size pieces) and saute them in a little butter until the liquid has come out from them and then evaporated, add the crushed garlic in for the last minute of cooking. Finely chop the turkey and the spring onions. Mix the turkey, spring onions, cooked mushrooms and garlic, peas and teriyaki sauce together and set aside.

Wonton filling mixture

3. Divide the dough into two or three, keeping the unused part wrapped until ready to use. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out as thinly as you can – it’s quite a strong dough so you can really go for it without it tearing. Cut it into squares 3.5 inches by 3.5 inches (I used a ruler and a pizza cutter). Repeat with the rest of the dough. If you’re in a warm environment, then cover and refrigerate the squares for a while before use.

4. To make the wontons, take one square (keep the rest covered until you need them or they will dry out). Wet the outside of the square, place a rounded teaspoon of the mixture inside each one and fold the bottom half up and over, pressing down firmly around the edges to seal. Bring the two corners from the folded edge down and press together using water to seal again, then fold the outside edges upwards. Like this:

Wonton shaping

Repeat until done. I ended up with 27 wontons, and a little mixture left over (I used the left over mixture in an omelette the following day). Incidentally, you could freeze the prepared wontons at this stage, and drop them into soup stock straight from frozen at a later date.

Wontons

5. In a large pot, bring the chicken stock up to a light boil, add the soy sauce, hot pepper sauce and chinese five-spice. Check the seasoning levels and add more if needed.

6. Peel the carrots and then turn them into ribbons using your peeler. Wash and thinly slice the bok choy. Add the vegetables and the cooked turkey into the stock.

7. Bring a separate pot of water to the boil, drop the wontons in and cook for about 5-6 minutes, when they rise to the top of the water, they should be done. Remove them with a slotted spoon.

8. When the vegetables in the soup are just tender, add the wontons in and simmer for a couple more minutes.

And you’re done!

Wonton soup

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