Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Wontons and Mini Quiche

Alright! Today we're making wontons (or Jiǎozi as they're properly known. Actually what we're cooking are Gyōza, the Japanese version, because we're using garlic and such, but the wrappers should be thinner if we're going Japenese authentic. I get geeky about this stuff. Let's just call them wontons.)  and using the leftover gunk to make mini quiches, the best kind of quiches. 

Wonton preparation takes a while, so be sure to make an absolutely massive batch. Use the wontons in soups (boiled ones only) salads, lunch boxes over rice and for dipping in soy sauce or sweet chilli sauce.

Happy little package of convenience!
  • Three turkey breasts (or equivalent in just about any light meat)
  • Three spring onions
  • A cup of chopped bacon bits or cured ham if you're fancy (to counteract the healthy blandness of the turkey)
  • One tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp crushed (and chopped) chilli
  • Wonton wrappers from the local asian supermarket 
    • Look, I know you can make your own. I've done it. But these ones come in a lovely little packet and don't make a mess. If you really want to, it's just flour (preferably rice flour) and water. Go wild.
  • 2 eggs (one for the mixture, one for sealing the wontons)
Extra ingredients for the quiche:
  • Plain flour
  • Some kind of butter, stork or (at a push) animal fat
  • Another egg. I sure do love cholesterol in my cooking

  1. Prepare wonton filling
    1. Cut the meat like it owes you money. Seriously, as finely as you possibly can. It should look disgracefully not-meat-like by the end. If you have big lumps, they will make your wontons burst while cooking, and then that mix will stick to other wontons so even the successful wontons will remind you of your past failures
    2. Chop the spring onions finely and add to the bowl, season with salt and pepper
    3. Add 2 teaspoons of crushed garlic and 2 of crushed chilli, according to taste, and 1 tablespoon of oyster sauce. If you don't have oyster sauce, mix a tablespoon of soy sauce with a pinch of sugar and enough cornstarch to form the consistency of tomato ketchup, and add that
  2. Wontons, Assemble!

  3. Prussian Efficiency
    1. Assemble in batches. Put a teaspoon of filling in the middle of the wonton wrapper
    2. Beat an egg in a seperate dish and smear it around the outside with your finger while trying to take pictures/use a pastry brush like a responsible adult
    3. Fold in half and crimp the edges. Here are three pictures of valid ways of crimping the edges. The one with the fork most shouts "White girl cooking Chinese food" so that's what I generally go with. Also it reminds me of delicious pies
      Words can't bring them down, oh no no.

  4. Cook wontons
    1. Fill a kettle with boiling water and add a splash of soy sauce to help with flavour
    2. Lower wontons in carefully with a slotted spoon
    3. Boil them until the last wonton has risen to the top of the pan (Protip: Lay a wooden spoon over the pan to stop thing accidentally boiling over. If you work on gas, make sure to line it up with the handle of your pan or you'll burn it and everyone will laugh at your foolish error)
    4. Drain in a colander

This is how I like my wontons:
Pure and delicious, almost healthy
This is how my little sister likes hers.
All you have to do is pan fry after boiling-
gives them a nice crispy skin, for easier

Great! You've got wontons! And a whole bowl of wonton mixture left over! Fortunately, wonton mixture is basically the same as quiche mixture. If you're very foreign and don't know what a quiche is, it's an omelette pie. Am I making this sound glamorous? Quiche is manly, let's go.

Preheat the oven to 190C (374F), add the rest of the egg you used to seal the wontons to the bowl of slop and quickly knock up some short crust pastry:
Rolling pins are for losers
(this recipe only)
  1. Guesstimate the volume of pastry you want and put about half as much flour as that in a bowl. It's better to be over than under. Also add a generous pinch of cayenne pepper- this makes cracking pastry
  2. Add half as much fat as there is flour (stork or butter is best-- steer clear of anything that claims to be healthy) and rub in with your fingertips until it looks like breadcrumbs
  3. Crack and egg in and form into a ball with your hands. Sloppy? Add more flour until it resembles what you think pastry looks like
Spray your muffin tin with oil spray (or grease with butter and some kitchen towel). Now rip the pastry into balls, flatten with your fingers and line the muffin tin with them

Slop the mixture in each one, sprinkle grated cheddar delicately on top and whack them in the oven until the cheese starts going brown where it's spilled over on the muffin tin. Also it should smell like Cheese On Toast (Americans, I believe you have something called a "grilled cheese". Use that as guidance)

Smells like the dishonour of a filthy
muffin tin

Smells like the glory that is Cheese On

Cool on a cooling rack and chow down.

Quiche just doesn't look good in photos.
Trust me that this is delicious.
I think it's the arbitrary bits of spring onion
that really make it sparkle.
NB: Both these things are amazing in bentos (lunchboxes). The quiches can be just wrapped up in tin foil and eaten as a hearty mid-morning snack. Go crazy.


  1. Those aren't wontons. those are another kind of chinese dumpling called potstickers or jiaozi.

    1. Yup! Mentioned this in the introduction (albeit in teeny tiny letters!). Actually, they're a bit more like the Japanese Gyoza because we're using strong garlic flavours. I'm just using "wanton" an umbrella term for a Chinese dumpling here. Nice to see someone else who gets geeky about definitions!