Thursday, February 12, 2015

Kimchi Wontons/ Boiled Dumplings 泡菜云吞

For extended shelf-life, many brands of store-bought dumpling (be it wonton, gyoza) wrappers sold in the Bay Area grocery stores/supermarkets contain preservatives e.g. sodium benzoate. When I chanced upon these "free of sodium benzoate preservative" dumpling wrappers in Mitsuwa, San Jose store, I was excited.

How to fold wontons using round wrappers

However, in that excitement, I actually forgot to check the shape of the wrappers and bought round wrappers for wontons instead of what should be typically square wrappers for wontons.

Wontons are traditionally boiled version of the same dumplings which manifest themselves as pot-stickers or gyozas when pan-fried; wontons skins are also typically thinner than gyoza skins. Most store-bought dumpling wrappers go by this: square and thin (for wontons), round and thick (for pot-stickers)

Folded wontons to be boiled...

The Chinese characters on the package "饺子" meant dumplings, and not 云吞 - wontons. The graphic on the package also showed pan-fried-style dumplings. But, the package label also wrote "Tokyo Wantan" (keyword: wontons) with "Gyoza Kawa" in brackets (photo below), so I thought these wrappers can be used for wonton as well.


I worked around and wrapped the wontons (photo above) to fill as much as I could in these round yet thin wrappers, then boiled the wontons without them breaking apart in the bubbling boiling water.


Kimchi Chicken/Pork Wontons/ Boiled Dumplings 泡菜云吞
Ingredients:
1 pack Tokyo Gyoza Kawa (24 wrappers), available in Mitsuwa, San Jose store

[Filling]: 1/2lb organic chicken,1/2 cup finely chopped/diced kimchi,1/2 cup finely chopped green onions, ground white pepper, sesame oil

Directions:
Mix the filling ingredients, set aside. Prepare the wrappers to wrap wontons. Boil the wontons for a few minutes till the wontons float to the top of boiling water. Serve warm.

The boiled wontons are delicate and delicious. They are almost translucent after they are boiled, indication that the skin is thin yet able to hold the filling under boiling water.


Note: There might be excess fillings. You can shape them into patties to pan-fry, or make meatballs - then either boil them in your soups or deep-fry them.

These Tokyo Gyoza Kawa wrappers is definitely a good find. They are slightly more expensive (about $2/pack for 24 skins) than the New Hong Kong-brand and Dynasty-brand wrappers; but if wontons/dumplings is a regular item on your dinner table, I recommend a higher quality store-bought product, or better, make your own wrappers.

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