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October 2005 Issue
by Robbin Orbison
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Salmon Wontons in Shitake Mushroom Broth

This looks like more work than it is. It is made in stages but each is quite easy. The only time consuming part is folding the wontons, and you can shorten this by using a simple half fold as opposed to the traditional little hat shape. The result is well worth it.

For the Base Broth:

  • 2 Tbsp Peanut Oil
  • 1 lb Shitake Mushrooms, sliced, 4 large caps reserved
  • 1 piece fresh ginger about 2” long by ½ inch wide, sliced thick
  • 3 medium yellow onions, sliced
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup sake
For the Wontons:
  • 1 salmon filet, about 6 oz, skin and bones removed
  • 1 bunch scallions (about 8), white and light green parts, sliced thin – dark green parts of two scallions reserved
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • Wonton skins
For the Final Broth:
  • 1 Tbsp Peanut Oil
  • The 4 reserved mushroom caps, sliced thin
  • 1 small carrot, julienned
  • The base broth
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
For the Garnish:
  • Green parts of 2 scallions, chopped
  • Chile Oil
  • Additional soy sauce
To make the base broth:
  1. Heat 2 tbsp peanut oil in a stock pot.
  2. Add mushrooms, ginger and onions and sauté over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add two cups of water, bring to low simmer, cover and simmer 30 minutes.
  4. Add sake, return to simmer, cover and simmer 15 more minutes.
  5. Strain and discard solids, reserving liquid.
To make the wontons (while base broth is simmering):
  1. Process salmon in food processor about 30 seconds until consistency of ground meat.
  2. With hands, mix in other ingredients.
  3. Place about 1 teaspoon of salmon mix in each wonton skin, fold as preferred and set aside.
To finish the dish:
  1. Heat 1 tbsp peanut oil in a clean stock pot.
  2. Add reserved sliced mushroom caps and carrot, and sauté over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the base broth and vegetable stock, bring to low simmer, cover and simmer 10 minutes.
  4. Add wontons, return to low simmer, cover and simmer 5 minutes.
  5. Add soy sauce, taste and adjust if necessary.
  6. Fill bowls with desired number of wontons and broth to submerge wontons about half way.
  7. Sprinkle each bowl with chopped scallion.
  8. Serve, passing chili oil and soy sauce at the table.
  • Yields: about 24 wontons, or 4 appetizer portions
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