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Wontons are a type of dumpling that is very popular in Chinese cuisine. There are numerous ways to prepare the fillings and you can use all sorts of ingredients to prepare different kinds of fillings. Fillings can be meat-based, seafood, vegetarian, or even vegan.
There are also different names for wontons in different areas of China, and different ways to cook them. For example, people in Sichuan call wontons “Chao Shou” (抄手) and chao shou are usually folded into a triangle and served in a sesame paste, chili, and Sichuan peppercorn oil. Due to the color of the chili oil this dish has also gained the name “red oil wonton.” (紅油抄手).
Cantonese people like to make shrimp filled wontons with some minced pork, and they are usually served with noodles, broth, and vegetables. You can purchase wonton wrappers from Asian/Chinese supermarket but if you want to make wonton wrappers yourself or there are no Asian/Chinese supermarkets in your local area.
There are also many different ways to fold wontons but below is a step-by-step photo instruction guide to demonstrate a basic and simple way to fold a wonton.Continue to 2 of 7 below.
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Begin by Adding the Filling
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- Moisten all the edges of the wonton wrapper with water or with a lightly beaten egg. Keep a small bowl of water on hand to re-wet the edges if needed.
- Place about 1 teaspoon of uncooked filling in the center of the wonton wrapper.
- Fold the wonton wrapper in half lengthwise, making sure the ends meet. Press down firmly on the ends to seal. Spreading the filling out a bit helps keep the wonton wrapper from breaking open during cooking.
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Adjusting the Filling
Use your thumbs to push down on the edges of the filling to make sure it stays centered in the middle. Make sure the filling doesn’t come too close to the edge of the wrapper.Continue to 4 of 7 below.
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The Second Fold
Keeping your thumbs in place, fold the wonton wrapper over one more time. The filling is in the middle, but spread out a bit and not bunched up in the middle.Continue to 5 of 7 below.
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Shaping and Adjusting the Wonton Wrapper
Push the corners up and hold each corner in place between your thumb and index finger. You may want to moisten the edges again if needed.Continue to 6 of 7 below.
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The Final Adjustments
Bring the two corners together so that one overlaps the other. Press together to seal. As you will see in the next photo, when stood up the wonton should resemble a nurse’s cap.Continue to 7 of 7 below.
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You’re All Done!
The wonton is now ready to be boiled or deep-fried. Once you have got the basic technique down you can perfect your technique while making recipes such as wontons with a pork and shrimp filling, fried wonton, vegetarian wontons, and wonton soup.
Don’t want to use the filled wontons immediately? Uncooked wontons can be frozen. For the best results, bring back to room temperature before cooking.
Cover the filled wontons with a damp towel to keep them from drying out while preparing the remainder of the wrappers. You also need to cover the unused wrappers too!