Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Reconstructed Wonton Soup

Swiftly after our “Christmas-Extravagant-Family-Feasting” (as reported in the previous blog) everyone except the LOML (Love Of My Life) fled for other festivities and he and I ate simple meals until New Year’s Eve upon which fell more feasting at two grand parties.  There was the traditional 6:00 PM appetizer party at friends C & R’s place.  Everyone always brings something very wonderful and I decided to try something special and original.  This holiday season I had tried two different stuffings for wonton cups (explained soon) and decided to create a new dish that I call “Reconstructed Bok Choy Wonton Soup”.  The recipe (follows) includes all of the ingredients in the “Gourmet Today” recipe for “Gingered Port Wonton Soup with Bok Choy” (page 150) except for the egg.  But I have reconstructed the ingredients from a soup to a delicious appetizer. 

By-the-way, this is not a gluten free recipe.  However, the “filling” is delicious topping over rice noodles.

Wonton Cups – you need a mini-cupcake pan for this (sorry, can’t think of any alternatives, but making wonton cups is so easy you will use this pan over and over for glorious appetizers).  My newly purchased mini-cupcake tin is non-stick and I have used it three times in the 3 weeks that I have owned it.

Purchase wonton wraps in the fresh food section of your grocery store.  Arrange one wonton wrap in each cup.  Use a bit of water on your fingers to keep big folds stuck together (they can tend to sag into the chamber during baking which reduces the area for filling).  Bake wonton cups at 350 degrees for 7 minutes – until just barely golden.
Wonton “Soup” Filling
1 TBSP olive oil
1 lb. ground pork
2 TBSP finely chopped fresh ginger root
3 large cloves of garlic mashed
1 TBSP soy sauce
3 TBSP rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
~½ tsp freshly ground pepper
1 can low sodium, fat free can of chicken stock
1 bunch green onions, finely chopped
1 bunch Bok Choy (not baby Bok Choy), rinsed with most of the white thick parts removed and dried (use your salad spinner if you have one), roughly chop the remaining leaves and few stem parts

Heat olive oil in a skillet over high heat.  Add ground pork in tiny bits and sauté with the ginger, garlic, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil and pepper (to taste, remember that the ginger has a bite to it too). Sauté until the pork is just cooked.  Make sure that the pork is in small bits. 
Add chicken stock and boil until reduced to almost nothing (about ¼ to ½ cup liquid).  This takes at least ½ hour or more.  Don’t stop too soon!

Add the green onions and Bok Choy, simmer, stirring, until greens are wilted.  The white parts of the Bok Choy should remain crisp to add some crunch.
At this point you can stuff the wonton cups and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes.  Or you can make cups and stuffing ahead of time (even a day or two in advance) and stuff the cups and reheat at 350 degrees until hot (probably at least 15 minutes) before serving.  The cups are sturdy enough to be served on a tray – no need to keep them in the mini-cupcake tin which allows you to make more than one batch.

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