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Wonton Wrappers

 

These thin sheets can be used for dim sims, spring rolls, wontons, or anywhere a paper-thin pastry is required. A pasta machine is ideal for rolling thin pastry

Ingredients 

2 cups plain flour

1 egg

1 teaspoon salt

¾ cups water

Method 

Sift flour and salt together, add egg and enough water to form a stiff dough. Add water or flour to adjust. Wrap pastry in plastic for 15 minutes, then roll out as thinly as possible. Cut to desired shape and size and use quickly before pastry dries out.

 

Shapes and cooking methods

 

A bowl of wonton noodle soup

Wontons are commonly boiled and served in soup or sometimes deep-fried. There are several common regional variations of shape.

The most versatile shape is a simple right triangle, made by folding the square wrapper in half by pulling together two diagonally opposite corners. Its flat profile allows it to be pan-fried like a jiaozi (pot sticker) in addition to being boiled or deep-fried.

A more globular wonton can be formed by folding all four corners together, resulting in a shape reminiscent of a stereotypical hobo’s bindle made by tying all four corners of a cloth together.

A related kind of wonton is made by using the same kind of wrapper, but applying only a minute amount of filling (frequently meat) and quickly closing the wrapper-holding hand, sealing the wonton into an unevenly squashed shape. These are called xiao huntun (literally “little wonton”) and are invariably served in a soup, often with condiments such as pickles, ginger, sesame oil, and cilantro (coriander leaves).

Cantonese cuisine

In Cantonese cuisine, shrimp filled wonton within minced pork is most commonly served with thin noodles to make wonton noodles. It may also be consumed with red vinegar. The soup is made from boiling shrimp shells, pork bones and dried flounder to give it a distinct taste. Hong Kong wontons were introduced to the area after World War II as street food and later indoor eateries. Wonton is served in variety of sizes with smallest being two wonton and noodles called Sai Yung.

Sichuan cuisine

In Sichuan, semi-pentagonal wonton are known as chāo shǒu (抄手, literally “crossed hands” ) since after initially folding the wonton skin into a right triangle, each end of the hypotenuse are pressed against the middle of opposite sides, creating an impression of crossed arms/hands. These are often served in a sesame paste and chili oil sauce as a dish called “red oil wonton” (红油抄手).

Shanghai cuisine

In Shanghai and its surrounding area (Jiangnan), Wonton filling is most often made with minced meat and bok choy served in chicken soup; however, Shanghai cuisine makes a clear distinction between small wontons and large wontons. The former are casually wrapped by closing the palm on a wrapper with a dab of pork filling as if crumpling a sheet of paper. These are popular accompaniments to breakfast or brunch fare. The “large” wontons are carefully wrapped (often resembling large tortellini) and a single bowl can serve as lunch or a light dinner. They are available with a large variety of fillings; a popular Shanghai fast food chain offers more than 50 varieties. One popular variety in Shanghai which is said to have originated in Suzhou is “three delicacies wonton” (san xian hun tun)which contains pork, shrimp and fish as primary ingredients.

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