Friday, June 5, 2015

Beef Wontons

Beef Wontons

Wontons are my mom's specialty (check out Mom's Wontons), but for some reason I just don't like eating them because the pork inside just doesn't seem right to me. I know, I'm a weirdo. I can't explain it. Anyway, when I decided to make won tons for my school staff's end of the year party, I wanted to make sure that my non-pork eating friends and I were able to enjoy them too. My husband's Aunt Willa makes these fabulous egg rolls with a peppery ground beef, carrot, and cabbage filling, so I figured that would make a great filling for wontons too. And it DOES. Thanks, Aunt Willa, for sharing the recipe with me. So these are it. I like a lot of pepper in mine, so I don't actually know the exact amount I put in. The amount stated below is an estimate. This filling tastes meaty, salty, and slightly sweet, with just enough veggies to give it some flavor and make you feel like you're eating something that might be good for you. I don't think these actually are good for your body, but I think they're great for your soul. They made several people happy the other night, including me. So there.

Beef Wontons

  • 1 pound ground beef (90/10)
  • 1 cup carrots, shredded
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup cabbage, shredded or thinly chopped
  • 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 package (60 count) wonton wrappers
  • canola oil for frying
In a medium frying pan over medium heat, brown the ground beef. When nearly cooked through, add the carrots, onions, cabbage, pepper, sugar, salt, and soy sauce. Carefully stir to cook the veggies. When cabbage starts to wilt, turn the heat off and allow mixture to sit for about 15 minutes to cook a little more and cool slighlty.
Line a cooling rack with paper towels and set aside.
When mixture is cool enough to work with, place one won ton wrapper on a clean plate and wet two adjacent sides with water. Place about one scant tablespoon of filling in the middle of the square and carefully fold in half, creating a triangle shape. Seal the seams by pressing firmly with the sides of your hands/pinky fingers. Place a little dab of water on one of the longer pointy ends. Pick up the triangle with the central point facing downward and bring the two long points together at the top and cross them. Place the non-wet tip on top of the wet one and press to seal. (See below for video of how to fold wontons.) Repeat with remaining filling and wrappers. Set assembled but uncooked wontons on a wax paper lined baking sheet to wait.
Place about three inches of canola oil in a pot you use for frying. Heat oil over a medium heat until the temperature reaches about 360 degrees Fahrenheit, or a little piece of wonton wrapper placed in the oil fries and bubbles immediately when it's put in the hot oil.
When oil is ready, carefully place several wontons in the hot oil, being careful not to plop them in and burn yourself with splashing oil. I cook about 5-6 at a time. Turn wontons over (if they will let you) to make sure they brown all over. When wontons reach a nice golden brown color, remove them to the paper towel lined cooling rack. Allow won tons to cool for 5-10 minutes before attempting to eat.
Makes about 50-60 wontons.

Beef, carrot, and cabbage filling
Wontons ready to fry

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