you’re not familiar with Marion Grasby, she is a Thai-Australian cook,
television presenter, cookbook author, food writer, and the owner and creator
of the Marion’s Kitchen Asian product line. She makes the preparation of Asian
food look easy. Essentially, it is, but it’s also very time-consuming if you
don’t know what you’re doing, and I didn’t. I watched Marion make a delicious
looking wonton soup in a video that lasted about 15 minutes. This morning I
made that soup; it took me three hours, and afterwards I had to have a nap. But
the soup is delicious, and most importantly, authentic tasting, thanks to
Marion’s Asian chicken stock that is a serious game changer. When I finally sat
down to enjoy my soup this afternoon, I could not believe that I had made
something that tasted of restaurant quality.
I got the idea to make wonton soup because Chinese New Year will be celebrated
at week’s end, and I like to be authentic. Any celebration that involves
Chinese food is right up my alley. This doesn’t need to take you as long as it
took me, because you can make the components ahead of time, something I
strongly recommend. I chose to do mine all at once, and I will not do that again.
Here is Marion’s recipe with a few of my adaptations. For one, I used Melissa’s
Produce’s wonton wrappers, that may be a little smaller than the norm. I like
the smaller ones, because it allows a better filling-to-wonton-wrap ratio, as
well as allowing for adding more wontons per bowl of soup. I also changed her
directions a little bit to reflect a more American understanding of things, and
I cut back on the amount of chicken that she used because I wanted equal parts
shrimp and chicken in my wontons.
Try this for yourself, but do yourself a favor and make your stock one day,
your wontons another day (they can be frozen on a cookie sheet, then placed
into a Ziploc bag so they’re there
anytime you need them), and then making a nice hot bowl of delicious wonton
soup will be a breeze.
Wonton Chicken Noodle Soup
Slightly adapted from Marion Grasby
3 garlic cloves
1 tsp. black peppercorns
1-1/2” piece ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 bone-in chicken thighs
4 whole star anise
6 cups chicken stock
3 tbsp. soy sauce
1/2 tsp sea salt
Blanched bok choy, to serve
Cooked noodles, to serve
4 oz. skinless, boneless chicken, partially frozen, minced in processor
¼ cup finely sliced scallions
1 tsp. sesame oil
½ tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. ground white pepper
1 tbsp. water
1 tsp. cornstarch
4 oz. medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, roughly chopped
Use a mortar and pestle to pound the garlic, peppercorns, and ginger into a rough paste. Heat oil in a large pot over high heat and fry the paste for 30 seconds to 1 minute or until fragrant. Add the chicken pieces and cook, turning, until golden brown. Add the star anise, chicken stock, soy sauce, and salt. Bring to a simmer, then lower heat and gently simmer for 30 minutes. Remove chicken thighs from stock; allow to cool; slightly. Remove meat from bones, chop, and set aside to include in soup.
In the meantime, make the wonton filling. Place the ground chicken, scallions, sesame oil, salt, pepper, water, and cornstarch into a large mixing bowl. Mix until well combined and sticky. Then stir in the shrimp.
To form the wontons, place a tablespoon of the mixture onto the center of a wonton wrapper. Moisten edges with water and fold in half diagonally, and then bring one corner of the wonton to the center to meet the other. Repeat with remaining filling mixture.
Divide bok choy, chicken meat, and noodles among serving bowls.
Cook wontons in boiling water for 5 minutes or until cooked through. Drain and divide wontons among serving bowls. Strain the stock and ladle over the top.
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