Well, here’s another fine mess I’ve gotten us into… So, a slight diversion from the mother sauces, again by popular demand.
Being a tease the other night, I posted some Instagram pics of dinner, and ended up with a lot of y’all asking for a recipe, so here it is. If I’m gonna tease, I gotta come across thereafter. So here’s that dish – Ginger Chicken Wontons with Summer Vegetables.
This is a recipe that I literally threw together when some amazing sugar snap peas came ripe in Monica’s garden. You can often find really nice ginger chicken wontons for sale locally, but they’re also pretty easy to make at home, if you’ve got the time – They can certainly be made in less than half an hour with store bought wonton wrappers.
Ginger Chicken Wontons
1 Pound ground Chicken
1 large Egg
1/4 Cup Spring Onions, fine diced
1″ fresh Ginger, minced
2 cloves Garlic, smashed and minced
1 tablespoon Hoisin Sauce
1 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2 teaspoon ground Pepper
1/2 teaspoon Chinese Five Spice powder
3″ to 4″ wonton wrappers
Small bowl of ice water
In a non-reactive mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and knead by hand to thoroughly incorporate.
The key to making wontons is to have a nice, open prep space; arrange all the components so that they’re right at hand, then get after the production.
Wonton wrappers are square, which messes some folks up – don’t let it, it’ll work out just fine.
Spoon a heaping teaspoon of the ginger chicken mixture into the center of a wrapper.
Dip a finger tip into the ice water, and then run the wetted finger tip along the top and right edges of the wrapper.
Now get hold of the lower left corner of the wrapper and pull it up over the filling to the top, right corner.
Smooth out the wrapper so that all the air is squished out and the wrapper is tight all around the filling.
Dip your finger tip back into the ice water and dab that onto the right corner, then grab that corner and bring it around to the left one, and give them a pinch to seal everything down – viola, you got a wonton, (or, for that matter, a tortellini.)
So, now it’s cooking time, which means it’s time to decide what to add to your wontons. We had those amazing peas as our center piece, so I chose other stuff that complimented that, and here’s the drill. If you’ve got one, use a cast iron frying pan for this.
Ginger Chicken Wontons With Summer Vegetables
1 Cup Sugar Snap Peas
1 Cup Chicken Stock
1/2 Cup Cherry Tomatoes, sliced roughly 1/4″ thick slices
1/4 Cup Sweet Red Pepper, rough chopped
1/4 Cup Sweet Onion, rough chopped
1/8 Cup fresh Cilantro, chiffonade
1 Tablespoon fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
1 small lemon, halved
1 large clove garlic, smashed and minced
Fresh ground Pepper
Peanut Oil to coat the pan
Put a cast iron frying pan on medium high heat, and coat the bottom of the pan with peanut oil.
When the pan is up to heat, add the onion and peppers.
Season lightly with sea salt and pepper, and continue cooking until the onions begin to turn translucent.
Add the garlic and sauté until the raw garlic smell dissipates.
Transfer the aromatics from the pan into a small plate and set aside.
Add oil to recoat the bottom of the pan and allow that to heat through.
Add the wontons and sauté on one side for about a minute. Use a wooden spoon or fork and flip the wontons, and sauté for another minute or so until golden brown.
Add the chicken stock and allow to heat through.
Once the wontons and chicken stock are simmering, add the peas and tomatoes, reduce the heat to just maintain the simmer, and sauté for about another 3-4 minutes until the veggies are heated through.
Add the basil and cilantro, stir to incorporate and a heat through.
Squeeze the juice from the halved lemons and stir to incorporate.
Taste the jus and adjust seasoning with sea salt and fresh ground pepper.
Allow everything to heat thoroughly through.
Serve piping hot.