I had nothing – n.o.t.h.i.n.g. – to cook for dinner tonight. I’m sure you had one ‘those’ days. C’mon. Fess up. I know you did.
Saturdays are usually, “cook-whatever-is-left-in-the-fridge” day and I literally had: a package of wonton skins, tofu, scallions, cheese, eggs, soy milk, and some wilting greens. So, what did I do? I gathered up the ingredients and thought, “Hmmmm……I can stuff them all up into the wonton skins!” So I made meatless wontons, much to my family’s dismay. Mind you, they are carnivores and they believe wontons and dumplings are meant to be stuffed with either pork or shrimp. I had neither.
So I made vegan wontons and I thought I’d share the recipe with you because I thought they were f.a.b.u.l.o.u.s.!
1 package of wonton wrappers
1 package of FIRM organic tofu
2 scallions – chopped
2 tsp of minced ginger
3 tbsp of chopped cilantro
½ tsp salt
¼ black pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp black sesame seeds or plain sesame seeds
1 tsp organic corn starch or potato starch
(Optional – if you eat eggs, you can add 1 egg beaten instead of starch)
¼ cup of cold water (for sealing the wrapper)
1. The hardest part is squeezing all the water out of tofu. I use double layer cheesecloth bag. Rinse tofu under cold running water. Pat dry, put tofu inside a cheesecloth bag and squeeze as much water out of tofu as you can. When you can’t get any more water out, put tofu in a medium bowl. Add all the ingredients and mix well – preferably with your hand and squeeze all the ingredients together. (You can make the mixture up until this part ahead. Store in a glass bowl in the refrigerator)
2. Put about 1 tsp of the mixture in the middle of the wonton wrapper. Using your finger, wet the two consecutive edges with cold water. Gather the opposite corners of the wrapper, one from the wet side and one from the dry side, forming a triangle, and seal the two edges together. While you are making the wontons, boil water in a large pot.
3. One package of tofu made about 30 wontons. One package of wonton wrappers has about 200 wrappers. Store the remaining wrappers in a tightly sealed glass container or freeze them in a tightly sealed container for later use. If you are going to freeze the wrappers, separate them into the portions you want to use and freeze them separately. Defrost in the refrigerator when needed.
4. You can make large batches and freeze them for later use. Since tofu mixture can be eaten without cooking them (I eat tofu right out of the box!), you don’t need to boil these that long. When the wontons wrappers look transparent, they are done. You can use slotted spoon and take them out. If you want to use them in a soup, like I did, you can put them in boiling broth AFTER you cook them in water for a couple of seconds.
*Update: In order to make this shape, bring the long corners together and pinch them together.
5. You can also steam these in a bamboo steamer or stainless steel vegetable steamer. Line the bottom with lettuce leaf or a coffee filter and then put the wontons in a single layer. Dip them in soy sauce and white distilled vinegar. Or seasoned soy sauce.
I love dumplings or wontons. They are so versatile and easy to make. You cane make the mixture ahead of time and stuff them while listening to music or watching a movie. Or have your family members join you and have a wonton party. Kids love making them too. It’s like playing with play doh. And what’s even better is that there is no right or wrong way to shape them. Get creative. Get imaginative. Create some wild shapes.
The only one problem with making wontons is that you can’t make them fast enough!! Enjoy!