Let's be honest with each other - no one really reads the story that goes with recipe blog posts. That being said, I do feel obligated to say something about why I made this.
After engorging myself with dim sum a couple weeks ago, I was still craving a taste of home. And when I say a taste of home, I mean a taste of something that makes me feel like me.
My parents never made won ton soup at home - we almost always went out for Chinese food, rather than making it at home. To be fair, my mom didn't make Chinese food, and my dad didn't start making dinner on a regular basis until I was in middle school.
But even then, we had so many delicious Chinese restaurants in town, so why cook at home? And when I say Chinese restaurants, I'm not talking about Panda Express or a buffet that also serves french fries or a greasy spot that is almost strictly for to-go orders.
I'm talking about restaurants with chandeliers and lazy Susans. I'm talking about restaurants that offer you one menu in English (with no pictures) and one in Chinese, assuming that non-Chinese speakers won't want certain dishes. I'm talking about restaurants that only serve dim sum on the weekends, don't accept reservations during that time, and serve you a variety of dishes from rolling carts directly to your table.
Maybe I'm just riding the hype of the recent release of Crazy Rich Asians (which I haven't seen yet), but I wanted a simple dish that helped me reset all the fervent chaos inside my head. So I made won tons and cooked them in the chicken broth left over from making Hainan chicken.
for the won tons:
500g ground pork
250g shrimp, cooked and minced
4-5 green onions
2/3 cup whole water chestnuts, minced*
1 tbsp shaoxing wine*
1 tbsp soy sauce*
1/2 tsp ground white pepper*
1 pack frozen won ton wrappers (thaw in fridge)
for the broth:
1 whole chicken (if you buy frozen, be sure to thaw it completely)
3-4 green onions
2-3 2-inch pieces of ginger, sliced in thirds*
parchment or foil
ziploc bag or container
*I didn't really measure these ingredients. These are my approximations.
1. Line at least one (if not two) baking sheet with parchment or foil that will fit in your freezer.
2. Combine all the won ton ingredients in a large bowl. Scoop a healthy teaspoon of filling onto center of a won ton square, then fold however you see fit (Woks of Life has some great suggestions).
3. When baking sheet is full, place it in freezer and start lining the other baking sheet with more won tons. If you don't have another baking sheet, leave the won tons until they won't stick to each other when you put them in the ziploc bag or container to store in the freezer.
4. Once you finish making the won tons, put the ginger and green onions into a large pot of water and bring to a boil. (I add enough water that looks like it'll cover the whole chicken.) When boiling, gently add the chicken butt-side down, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Then turn the burner off and let sit for another 15 minutes.
5. Remove chicken to cutting board and tent with foil. Bring the pot of water with green onions and ginger up to a gentle boil for another 2 hours. I usually keep the lid cracked on top.
At this point, you can scoop some broth out to cook rice, or make a dipping sauce with a squeeze of lime juice, a teaspoon of sugar, and a healthy shake of fish sauce.
6. Scoop broth into a smaller pot for cooking the won tons. Bring broth to a boil, then add as many frozen won tons as you like. Cook for 5 minutes. Serve as you like.