Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Yum cha feast - dumplings, prawn toasts and wontons

I am finally feeling better and actually feel like cooking. So on Friday I gave up my opportunity to sleep, in order to prepare a feast of yum cha goodies. I have been craving dumplings for some time and given there is nowhere to get good ones where I live I had to make my own. The menu included prawn wontons, crispy prawn wontons, pork potsticker dumplings and sesame prawn toasts.
The prawn wontons and sesame prawn toasts were the picks of the night. They really don't take that long to make (when you don't make four things at once with two different sauces) so I will definitely be making them again soon.

We ate them one course at a time and  they were so tempting once cooked I didn't remember to take a photo of everything, need to work on this blogging thing!

Prawn wontons with spring onion, ginger and vinegar dressing
makes 16 small wontons, beware this may not be enough! The dressing is really delicious and makes the dish. I forgot to photograph these twice, on the night and when we ate the leftovers!

300 g (~9) uncooked prawns, peeled, deveined and diced (~150g prawn meat)
1 tbsp roughly chopped coriander leaf
1 tbsp finely sliced spring onion scallions
1½ tsp finely diced Ginger
1 tsp shaohsing wine or dry sherry
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp Oyster sauce
¼ tsp white sugar
¼ tsp Sesame Oil
16 fresh wonton wrappers about 7cm square ( I used shanghai wonton wrappers)
2½ tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp coriander roots and stems, finely sliced
2 tbsp ginger, finely diced
2 tbsp spring onions, finely sliced
2 tbsp kecap manis
2 tbsp malt or rice vinegar
¼ tsp chilli Oil or chopped chilli
1/2 tsp sesame Oil

Combine soy sauce, coriander, ginger, spring onions, kecap manis, vinegar and both oils in a bowl and set aside.

Combine prawn meat and remaining ingredients, except wonton wrappers, in a bowl, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Next fill and shape the wontons. You can just brush the edges with water and fold in half to form a triangle, or try some of these shapes:
Gold ingots
8 wonton shapes 

Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Drop wontons, in batches, into the water and cook for 2 minutes or until wontons are just cooked through. To test the wontons you will need to remove one using a slotted spoon and cut it through with a sharp knife to see if the prawns are just cooked through.

Remove wontons with a slotted spoon and drain. Repeat process with remaining wontons.

Arrange wontons on a platter or in individual bowls and serve immediately drizzled with dressing.
Recipe by Kylie Kwong on Lifestyle Food
Crispy Prawn Wontons with Sweet Chilli Vinegar Sauce
These are the same wonton recipe as above, only deep fried with a different sauce. I used egg wonton wrappers which deep fry really well.

1 C rice wine vinegar
3/4 C white sugar
5 tbsp fish sauce
2 large red chilli's finely sliced on the diagonal
vegetable oil for deep frying

Place vinegar and sugar in a medium-sized heavy-based saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes or until liquid is reduced by almost half and slightly syrupy. Remove from stove, stir in fish sauce and chillies and set aside.
Prepare wontons.

Heat oil in a hot wok until surface seems to shimmer slightly (you don't want it too hot as they will brown quickly but not cook through). Add wontons in batches and deep-fry for about 2 minutes or until just cooked through and lightly browned. To test the wontons you will need to remove one using a slotted spoon and cut it through with a sharp knife to see if the prawns are just cooked through.

Remove wontons with a slotted spoon and drain well on kitchen paper. Repeat process with remaining wontons.

Serve immediately with a bowl of sweet chilli dipping sauce.
Recipe by Kylie Kwong on Lifestyle Food

Pork Potsticker Dumplings
makes about 20. These are those dumplings with a crispy base and soft steamed topped, the Japanese version are known as gyoza.

3 dried chinese mushrooms
250g pork mince (you can substitute some of this for prawns)
1/4 C coriander leaves, chopped
2 tbsp spring onions, chopped
1 tbsp ginger, minced or grated
1 garlic clove, minced or grated
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
3 water chestnuts, finely chopped
1 pkt gyoza, gow gee or wonton wrappers

Soak the mushroom in warm water for 20 minues, then squeeze out water. Remove stem and finely chop.

Combine remaining ingredients (except wrappers).

Lay out a wrapper and brush the edges with water. Place a teaspoon of filling in the centre. Fold up the edges and pinch together to seal, gathering one side as you go.

Heat a dash of oil in a non-stick frypan (for which you have a lid) and add dumplings, cook on medium high heat until the bottoms are golden brown, about a minute or two. Pour in 1/2 C of water and quickly cover, the steam with cook the dumplings through for 2 minutes. Remove the lid and cook until liquid is evaporated and bottoms are crisp. You don't want to over cook as this will make them tough.

Serve with a sauce of soy sauce with a dash of chinese black vinegar, or with the ginger, spring onion and vinegar dressing above.

Sesame Prawn Toast
makes 12. I served these with the sweet vinegar chilli sauce above. This is a photo of them before they are fried. Once fried we ate them too quickly to photograph, sorry!

6 slices white bread, stale or lightly toasted, crust removed halved into rectangles or triangles
500g prawns, peeled and deveined (~250g prawn meat)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp ginger, finely chopped
2 spring onions, sliced
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg white
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 egg, beaten
sesame seeds
oil for deep frying

Set aside 6 prawns, halfing them down the middle.

Place remaining prawns, garlic, ginger, spring onions, sugar, salt, egg white and sesame oil into a food processor or blender and process until smooth. You can do this in advance.

Spread a tablespoon of paste on each piece of bread and spread to the edges with a mound in the middle. Lay one reserved prawn half on top. Brush with beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Heat oil in a wok or saucepan over medium heat. Fry pieces a few at a time, about 1 minute each side until crisp and golden. Drain on paper towels.

Serve hot with dipping sauce.

1 comment:

  1. man you would of been busy that night I can see why you roped in some kitchen hands ! i've never made prawn toasts, will give them a go ...