Savory Pumpkin Wonton Bites

Starters | July 31, 2017 | By

Dazzle your party guests with these Asian-style Savory Pumpkin Wonton Bites! Wontons are incredibly versatile! Our spin on these delicious appetizers combine pumpkin puree with sweet roasted garlic and fragrant Chinese five spice. We steamed them in a bamboo steamer first. You can stop there, or take the next step and quickly fry them for a nice crispy bite. Fresh wontons sure beat the frozen-in-the-bag version! Don’t be skittish about making wontons. They don’t have to look perfect! Just a nice seal on all sides will do (think triangle and you’re golden!) so the stuffing doesn’t leak out. You can purchase wonton wrappers at most grocery stores in the produce section. This is a truly unique appetizer that will be gobbled up quickly! 

These savory pumpkin wontons are a winner for apps! Serve them warm with a sprinkle of basil and parmesan cheese on top!

wontons-on-tray_600x400Place the stuffed wonton wrappers on a baking sheet before steaming.

wontons-in-steamer_600x400Steam the wontons in a bamboo steamer or stove-top steaming insert.

wontons-in-frying-pan_600x400Fry the wontons in a skillet after steaming, and serve warm!

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Savory Pumpkin Wonton Bites
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 whole bulb of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot, minced
  • 1 cup organic pumpkin puree
  • ¼ teaspoon Chinese Five Spice
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup fresh Thai basil, chopped (or regular basil, reserve extra for garnish)
  • 14 square wonton wrappers
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut off the tip of the garlic bulb and place in the middle of a sheet of aluminum foil. Fold the sides around the garlic bulb sealing at the top. Place in the middle of the oven. Roast the garlic for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium nonstick skillet, add teaspoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Sauté the shallots about 3 minutes until softened. Set aside to cool. Wipe out the skillet.
  3. To make the filling: Squeeze out the roasted garlic from the skin into a medium mixing bowl. Add in the pumpkin puree, shallots, Chinese Five Spice, cayenne pepper, a pinch of salt and pepper, and basil. Mix together with a fork.
  4. To make the wontons: Using one wonton wrapper at a time, place a teaspoonful of the pumpkin mixture into the middle of the wrapper. Using your fingertip, brush the two top sides with water and fold up to meet the top, forming a triangle. Brush the two pointed ends with water and fold the ends over each other to seal, forming a pocket. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Repeat with other wonton wrappers.
  5. Place the wontons in a single layer in a bamboo steamer or other stove-top steamer sprayed with cooking spray. Steam for about 10 minutes. Heat the non-stick skillet with canola oil over medium-high heat. Brown the wontons for about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer the wontons to a serving platter. Sprinkle with cheese and garnish with extra basil. Serve immediately.

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Steamed Vietnamese Rolls

steamed Vietnamese rolls, Vietnamese rolls, spring rolls, Asian appetizer, Asian rolls, steamed, bamboo appetizer, Asian appetizer

Starters | March 21, 2017 | By

Had a fabulous dinner recently at Indochine in NYC!  I loved one of their appetizers and had to recreate it with my own twist, Steamed Vietnamese Rolls, with a ground turkey and shrimp filling that’s to die for!  It’s ridiculously easy to make, but you will need either a bamboo steamer or a steamer insert for a large pot.  You sauté the veggies first and add to the protein mixture which is then topped with bean sprouts and warmly nestled into wonton wrappers.  The rolls steam up to perfection!  Serve along side a tasty dipping sauce and your party guests will beg for this starter recipe!  

Wonton wrappers are filled with goodness, ground turkey, shrimp and sautéed veggies, then steamed in a bamboo steamer.

These delicious wonton rolls are steamed quickly, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Served with a sweet and spicy dipping sauce, these steamed Vietnamese rolls are a hit!

Steamed Vietnamese Rolls
 
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 red Thai chili pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ pound ground turkey
  • ½ pound uncooked shrimp, peeled and finely chopped
  • 6 oz. wonton wrappers (3x3’s)
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts
  • Handful fresh basil, chopped
  • Dipping Sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek
  • 1 tablespoon mirin wine
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • ½ fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
Instructions
  1. Heat canola oil in a medium sauté pan. Add in the garlic, shallots, carrots, and Thai chili peppers. Sauté until onions are translucent, about 3 minutes. Add in the green onions, ginger, salt, and pepper. Cook another 3-4 minutes. Transfer vegetables to a bowl and let cool.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the ground turkey and chopped shrimp. Add in the sautéed vegetables and mix until well combined. Place a small amount of water at the bottom of a large wok, and set a bamboo steamer lined with parchment paper into the wok (or you can use a regular steamer insert into a pot).
  3. Place a wonton wrapper on a flat surface and add about 1 tablespoon of the mixture to the middle of the wrapper. Top the mixture with fresh basil and some beansprouts. Use your finger to dab some water along the top edge of the wonton wrapper. Fold the bottom edge up towards the top, rolling the wonton to meet the top edge. Seal and place in a bamboo steamer lined with parchment paper. Keep repeating this process until you fill the steamer with the wonton rolls. Heat the wok on high until boiling. Cook (steam) the wonton rolls until mixture is cooked thoroughly, around 8-10 minutes. Serve immediately on a platter with the dipping sauce.
  4. To make the dipping sauce: Whisk together the chili sauce, sambal oelek, mirin wine, ginger, lime juice, soy sauce, and fresh basil. Serve along side the steamed rolls.
Notes
Sambal oelek can be found at specialty Asian markets and select grocery stores. You can substitute the sambal oelek for sriracha sauce.

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Chicken Satay Skewers with Spicy Peanut Sauce

chicken satay skewers

Main, Poultry, Starters | February 21, 2017 | By

How many ways can you cook chicken? Stop hitting yourself over the head with a meat mallet because you’re stuck on the same old recipes! Find some wooden skewers and make this easy and fun-to-eat chicken dish! You can serve it as a starter, or make it a main course with steamed rice on the side. I’ve skewered it with both chicken cutlets or cut-up chicken breasts. Either will do. The chicken doesn’t take long to grill using an indoor grill pan or outdoor grill, so stay on top of it! If you have any leftovers, top a salad with this chicken — so tasty!

Chicken Satay Skewers with Spicy Peanut Sauce
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
For the Marinade
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sambal oelek
  • ½ teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • Handful chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken tenders
  • 8 bamboo skewers soaked for 30 minutes
Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light coconut milk
  • ¼ cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • ½ teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon crushed or grated garlic
  • ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
Instructions
  1. In medium sized bowl, combine fish sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, sambal oelek, lime juice, ginger and cilantro. Whisk until thoroughly combined. Put marinade in large plastic baggie and add chicken tenders. Refrigerate for one hour. Remove chicken from marinade (discard) and thread each chicken tender onto a bamboo skewer.
  2. Heat a grill pan or grill on medium-high. Spray with cooking spray first so chicken doesn't stick. Grill chicken 2 to 3 minutes on each side until cooked through and light grill marks appear. Serve with dipping sauce.
To make dipping sauce
  1. Combine all ingredients into blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
Notes
Also good with rice on the side if serving as an entree.

Sambal oelek can be found at specialty Asian markets and select grocery stores.

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