Asparagus tips in clear broth with wantons

It’s getting colder with the temperature in the negatives every day now. We couldn’t be clear whether it is still Autumn or we are approaching winter but it is definite that harsher weather condition is here to stay. Right now, being out in the cold night for more than 5 minutes is like having your face slapped a thousand times. Okay! I’m exaggerating but it’s really quite painful! Oh my poor face…

In response to this, more recipes for soups are expected to appear at this platform. After days of eating potato chips and heaty stuff, it’s time that I cook more soup. I like this particular one because I can get to eat my greens and it’s really a one pot dish – so convenient and healthy. I don’t think I have added any amount of cooking oil apart from a small drop of sesame oil when marinating the minced pork mixture to be wrapped into wontons, or should I say, the Chinese version of Ravioli.

 

Serves 2
For the broth:

500g asparagus
1 whole tomato
1 celery stalk, cut into 4 pieces
salt and ground black pepper

Main ingredients:
14 x 2 wonton skins (Ken and I can eat 7 each)
1 egg white, lightly beaten, to seal
Corainder leaves, to garnish
light soy sauce, to serve

For the filling:
minced pork
shrimps, deveined and cut into small portions
water chestnut, chopped into small pieces
finely chopped fresh gingerroot
light soy sauce
Shaoxing cooking wine
Sesame oil
salt & pepper

1. To make the broth, trim the asparagus tips off about 2.5 inches from the top and set aside. Put the rest of the stalks, tomato and celery into a pot with 1.5 quarts of water and bring to a boil. Cover the pot and simmer for 30 minutes, then break up the tomato and continue to simmer for 5 minutes longer. Strain this stock into another pot.

2. Marinate the filling. Mix the minced pork with the rest of the filling ingredients. Knead the mixture for a few minutes, then add salt and pepper, soy sauce and Shaoxing cooking wine to taste and mix in thoroughly. I usuallydo this step first and place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

3. Divide the filling into the portions that you have for wonton skins. Put one portion in the centre of a wonton skin. Brush the edges of the skin with lightly beaten egg white and then seal the wonton skin with another, on top of it.

4. Heat a saucepan of water and add 1 tsp of salt. Bring to a boil and drop in some wontons (depending on the size of your saucepan) to cook them. Boil for 4 – 5 minutes, then transfer with a draining spoon to a strainer to drain. Cook the remaining wontons in the same way ( You may want to cover the cooked wontons with some hot water/broth so that they do not stick together).

5. Just before serving, bring the broth to a boil. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Add the asparagus tips and simmer for 4 – 5 minutes or until they are just tender.

6. Pour the broth into the bowls and divide the asparagus tips and wontons between the bowls. Serve piping hot and garnish with coriander leaves.

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