Sunday, February 22, 2009

Pad Thai Dumplings

This was the first course of the meal I made for my friends this weekend. The idea here was to use vegetables in pad thai sauce, but to replace the noodles traditionally in pad thai with the wonton wrapper used to make the dumpling. I thought it worked pretty well, although I think I might have made the sauce a little too strong, or put a little too much tamarind in it. Other than the sauce, the measurements in this recipe are just rough estimates, and you should feel free to adjust them to suit your tastes. For a good set of instructions on how to fold the dumplings go here.

Pad Thai Dumplings

Makes ~ 30

2 T tamarind concentrate dissolved in 3 T hot water 
1 T + 1 tsp fish sauce 
1 ½ tsp chili paste (adjust to your taste) 
2 T brown sugar

3 cloves garlic, minced 
¾ cup shredded carrots
3 green onions, green and white parts thinly sliced 
½ cup coarsely chopped peanuts, plus more for garnish 
2/3 cup salad shrimp, coarsely diced 
¼ cup packed cilantro, diced Juice from half a lime (about 2 tsp)
Peanut oil for stir frying 
30 wonton wrappers
Spray oil (like pam)

1.Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray with oil (making sure it is well covered, these things stick!) Whisk the first four ingredients in a bowl, this is the sauce, set aside.

2. Put a small amount of peanut oil into the bottom of a wok or pot set over medium-high heat, with just one piece of garlic. When the garlic starts to sizzle add the remaining garlic and stir fry for one minute. Add the carrots, green onions, peanuts, and half the sauce, stir fry for another thirty seconds, and then remove from heat.

3. Move the contents of the wok to a bowl, attempting to leave behind excess sauce. Stir in the shrimp, cilantro and lime juice.

4. Place about 2 tsp of filling in the center of each wonton wrapper. Use a wet finger to dampen the edges of the wrapper, and bring the opposite corners together (so you fold it into a triangle). Press closed the seam and bring the two outer points to the center and pinch the three points of the triangle together (it helps to have damp fingers when doing this, the wrapper will stick to itself better). If this seems unclear, check out the link to instructional pictures above, or those I’ve included at the bottom of this post.

5. Put the dumplings on the cookie sheet. Spray all of the dumplings with oil, and bake them for about ten minutes, or until the wonton wrappers are becoming translucent and look like they’re becoming crispy. Serve promptly with remaining sauce for dipping. Garnish with additional peanuts, green onions, and slices of lime.

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