It is traditional for Northern Chinese families to spend New Year’s Eve making batches of jiaozi dumplings. They start to eat the dumplings after midnight and one lucky member of the family might find a coin inside their dumpling. This is similar to the British traditional of hiding a coin in the Christmas pudding. Yes, New Year’s Eve dumplings are really popular in China and a big part of the celebrations.
New Year’s Eve Dumplings: Dumpling Soup Tips
Wonton soup, or dumpling soup, dates back as far as the 7th century in China. These Chinese introduced these stuffed dumplings to Japan and actually the Japanese word ‘udon’ which means noodle derives from the Chinese word ‘hun hun’ which means wonton. You can get varying thicknesses and shapes when shopping for wonton wrappers, which are made with flour, water and egg. The traditional size is 3½ inches on each side.
You can also get round ones which are suitable for making jiaozi or potstickers, as well as larger wrappers which are for egg rolls. Thicker and extra-thin wonton skins might also be available in your local Chinese market. Don’t mistake Chinese wonton wrappers with rice-paper wrappers either. These come from Southeast Asia and Vietnam, are paper thin, and have a very different flavor. Continue reading
The first thing you need to do when making wontons is familiarize yourself with how these bite-sized treats are made, and find out what you need to make wontons. Knowing how to make wontons doesn’t require a whole lot of training. Practice makes perfect and really, it’s easy! You also need to decide what type of wonton recipe you wish to prepare. Do you want to make a classic wonton soup recipe or would you like to start off with baked wontons or fried ones? You can even steam them if you have a bamboo steamer and you want a softer texture.
Once you have found a good recipe for your wonton filling, you can assemble your wontons and discover how to make wontons and how easy it is! The wrappers need to be totally thawed before you attempt to separate them, else they might stick together and break. It is a good idea to cover up any wonton wrappers you are not using yet or any assembled wontons with a clean damp towel to stop them from drying out. If you are making a hundred wontons at a time (and you might be, since they freeze so well) then you will want to keep the prepared ones fresh while you work on getting the rest completed. Continue reading
Some More Hot Content For You
If you are looking for an easy wonton recipe to impress your family, you are sure to find some very tempting wonton recipes right here. Everyone loves wonderful wontons and they are so easy to prepare.
There are various ways to wrap wontons and ways to cook wontons so whether you fancy a crunchy filled wonton or a soft dumpling-like one, we have the best wonton recipes for you.
It is easy to be spoilt for choice because all of these easy wonton recipes are good ones. Perhaps you want to start off with some deep-fried wontons, since those are a favorite of many people, or what about an easy wonton soup, just to show you how easy making wontons can be? Continue reading
Let’s have a look at some fun facts about wontons. Did you know that the word wonton comes from Cantonese, not Mandarin? These tasty little dumplings are believed to have been introduced to the West by early Chinatown settlers from Canton, Southern China. Wonton literally means “swallowing clouds” in Chinese.
Cantonese ones are wrapped in a yellow wrapper made from egg and flour. They often contain shrimp and ground pork. The broth is often made from shrimp shells and other flavorful ingredients.
What are some other fun facts about wontons? In Shanghai the wrapping is flour-based and thicker and whiter than in Canton. The filling will usually include bok choy and pork. Chopped green (spring) onions and leeks are also popular. The soup is normally made with water, soy sauce and seasoning. White is not a good color in China, for food, because it is associated with death, which is why so few Chinese recipes are just white. Continue reading
A bamboo steamer is very simple to use and you can get one online or from your local Asian grocery store. Before you use it you should wash it in soapy water and let it air-dry. This is very important, especially if you live somewhere humid, so it does not become moldy. Rinse it and let it air-dry after every use. Knowing how to use a bamboo steamer is very simple so read on for some more tips.
These steamers are really cheap to buy, especially when compared to the stainless steel type. This means if you aren’t sure whether you will like steaming, you simply want to give it a go, or you don’t think you will be steaming often then it makes sense to choose bamboo over stainless steel. It is lighter and more fragile but it is not delicate. It stands up to the job. Head to any Asian supermarket and you will be able to pick up a steamer, either a single or double layer or one with more layers, depending on how much food you want to steam at once. Knowing how to use a bamboo steamer is very straightforward but you might like to buy some different sizes of bamboo steamers.
You can also order bamboo steamers online. Once you have your steamer you will need to decide what you’re going to cook in there – dumplings, char siu, fish, chicken, even potatoes or vegetables. A bamboo steamer gives you lots of possibilities and cooking options. It does not take up much room so you will be able to store it away once you have finished cooking with it and given it a clean. Don’t put it in the dishwasher but rinse it by hand in warm, soapy water then let it air-dry. If you put lettuce or cabbage leaves between your food to be steamed and the actual bamboo, cleanup will be faster and easier! Just discard the leaves after the food is ready.
How to Use a Bamboo Steamer: Best Bamboo Steamers
The best bamboo steamer for you depends how many people you cook for, what your budget is and what size of steamer you want. Do you want a simple one-layer or one which has a couple of removable layers too? I suggest you get one with a number of layers so you can steam various items at once, removing layers when you only want to steam a chicken breast, 10 Chinese dumplings or whatever. This would be a great investment for anyone who likes to try new things in the kitchen and discover all the wonderful foods you can steam.
Steaming means you don’t have to add fat to your food, so it is healthier than sauteing and definitely lower in fat and calories than deep frying. I like Helen Chen’s Asian Kitchen Bamboo Steamer. You can choose from 4, 6, 10 or 12 inches in diameter depending on your needs.
Use it to cook meats, fish or vegetables, or to reheat dim sum and appetizers. This steamer is made from 100% tightly woven bamboo slats and it has bamboo pegs holding it tightly together rather than wires, plastic or metal. The lid fits snugly, trapping the steam inside, so your food cooks quickly and evenly.
Why Steaming is Popular
Baking and roasting are not common in the typical Asian kitchen, which is why steaming is so popular, and most kitchens will have a bamboo steamer to hand and use it often. This isn’t only for cooking though; use it to reheat leftovers or refresh stale bread. Discovering how to use a bamboo steamer is all about learning the different things you can do in there.
To use this bamboo steamer, rest it over a wok or steaming ring with a little liquid in there and put the food in the steamer. Close the lid and then steam until the food is hot and cooked through. Invest in this easy bamboo steamer and you will be amazed how easy it is to use and how many tasty snacks and meals you can make in it. Why not try our steamed vegetable wontons recipe to get you started, or try some steamed couscous with fruit for something sweeter? Whatever you choose to make first, there is no doubt your new bamboo steamer will inspire you to seek out more steamed food recipes and make great use of it. This might not look as sturdy or resilient as a metal pan, for example, but I’ve had mine for years and it’s still pristine.
Best Bamboo Steamer, on Amazon
So what exactly do you need for making wontons? Well, wonton wrappers (also known as wonton skins or wonton papers) are crucial. Unless you decide to make your own of course! You will need some wonton making supplies in order to make delicious wontons.
You will also need your chosen ingredients for the filling and that might be anything from minced pork, beef or chicken to cheese, vegetables or, if you want to make dessert wontons, chocolate, caramel, bananas, apple and other goodies. Wonton wrappers have a neutral flavor so they are equally well suited to spicy, mild or even sweet fillings. Continue reading
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