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Shrimp & Chinese Chive Wonton Soup
1 h 15 m
“This recipe for homemade wontons makes it easy to make a healthy version of the famous Chinese wonton soup at home. Look for wonton wrappers in the refrigerated section of your supermarket near the fresh noodles or tofu and go for the square ones (not round). Leftover wrappers can be wrapped airtight and frozen for up to 1 month.”
2 Chinese dried mushrooms or dried shiitakes
4½ cups low-sodium chicken broth, divided
4 ounces raw medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
¼ cup minced chives, preferably Chinese chives (see Tip)
2 tablespoons minced water chestnuts or jícama
2 teaspoons Shao Hsing rice wine (see Tip) or dry sherry
7 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, divided
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
1 tablespoon cornstarch
24 square fresh wonton wrappers
4 ( ¼ inch) slices fresh ginger, peeled and smashed
12 yau choi (choi sum; see Tip) or broccolini stalks
2½ tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
Cilantro sprigs (optional)
1Place mushrooms in a small heatproof bowl. Heat ½ cup broth until steaming and pour over the mushrooms. Let stand until softened, about 30 minutes. Remove the mushrooms (reserve the broth); cut off and discard the stems and finely chop the caps.
2Cut shrimp into ¼-inch pieces. Combine the shrimp, the mushroom caps, chives, water chestnuts (or jicama), rice wine (or sherry), 1 teaspoon sesame oil and pepper in a bowl.
3Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly dust with cornstarch. Loosely cover wonton wrappers with a barely damp kitchen towel. Take 6 of the wrappers and set in a row with one corner facing you. Place a rounded teaspoon of the shrimp filling on the bottom corner of each wrapper. Starting at the bottom, roll each wrapper up three-quarters of the way, tucking in the filling as you go. Press on both sides to seal. Lightly dab a few drops of water on one of two side corners, bring the side corners together, overlap them and press to seal. Place the filled wontons on the prepared pan. Repeat in 3 more batches to make 24 wontons.
4Put 2 quarts of water on to boil in a large pot for cooking the wontons.
5Meanwhile, combine the remaining 4 cups broth, the reserved mushroom-soaking liquid and ginger in a large saucepan; cover and bring to a boil. Add yau choi (or broccolini) and cook until tender-crisp, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Discard ginger. Divide greens among 6 soup bowls and drizzle with 1 teaspoon sesame oil each. Stir soy sauce into the broth; cover to keep warm.
6Add half the wontons to the boiling water and return to a boil over high heat, nudging them with a slotted spoon to prevent them from sticking. Reduce heat to medium and gently simmer until all the wontons float to the surface, 2 to 4 minutes. Use the slotted spoon to divide the wontons among 3 of the bowls, then ladle about ¾ cup broth over each portion. Repeat with the remaining wontons and broth. Serve hot, garnished with cilantro, if desired.
Tips: Chinese chives taste like a cross between a leek and a ramp with a garlicky edge. Trim the white stem end before using. Look for them during the spring in summer at farmers' markets and year-round in Asian markets. They can be used interchangeably with flowering garlic chives, yellow chives and “plain” garden chives.
Shao Hsing (or Shaoxing) is a seasoned rice wine used in Chinese cooking to flavor sauces, marinades and stir-fries. Look for it in Asian specialty markets or with other Asian ingredients in large supermarkets. In a pinch, dry sherry is a good substitute.
Yau choi—a dark leafy Chinese green—has a sweet earthy flavor with a hint of mustard. Look for it in Asian markets, farmers' markets and in some well-stocked supermarkets. Baby bok choy or broccolini can be used as a substitute.