The boys are aching from their hard-fought game last night. I don't quite get football, so I'm usually seated at the far corner, trying to follow the game, cheering for my teenagers. Son #2 had played through all the four quarters, and crawled out of bed like he just came out of a train wreck. Our plans to go shopping for his newly re-modelled room were quickly scrapped (the word shopping doesn't excite the boys as it would us girls!), so I decided to use the time to make Dumpling Soup.
Adapted from the Singaporean cookbook Shiok! by Terry and Christopher Tan, the hours spent filling, folding and sealing the little dumplings are worth the effort. As I watch the boys take seconds, and even third helpings, the heavy blanket of exhaustion lifts off slowly as they become their sprightly selves again. But not enough to go shopping. I will have to bribe them with something else next time!
Minced Pork and Prawn Dumpling Soup
For the Dumplings:
500g minced pork
(minced chicken is a good substitute for non-pork eaters)
250g fresh prawns, peeled, deveined and minced
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
4 spring onions, sliced thinly
2 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked until soft, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 pack wonton skins, preferably round shaped
For the Soup:
6-8 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
For the Garnish:
10 garlic cloves, minced and sauteed until lightly brown
2 spring onions, sliced thinly
shredded cooked chicken breast
julienned iceberg lettuce
In a large bowl, thoroughly mix minced pork, prawns, cornstarch, soy sauce, sesame oil, spring onions, dried mushroom, salt, and pepper.
Take 1 wonton skin, place 1 teaspoon of dumpling mixture in the center. Make a slurry of cornstarch and water and use this to moisten the edges of the dumpling skin. Quickly fold edges together to resemble a half-moon and press edges firmly with your fingers, ensuring that it is sealed completely. You will be able to make about 40 dumplings with the above filling. Add as much dumplings as you wish to the soup. The rest can be frozen.
For the soup, add chicken stock, sesame oil, soy sauce and sugar to a pot and bring to a boil. Add your dumplings one at a time, lower the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring very gently to avoid the dumplings sticking together.
Top with a garnish of julienned lettuce, shredded chicken, spring onions and garlic. Spice it up with some chili oil, if desired.