- ¾ cup (150mL) cold water
- 3 Tbsp (50mL) soy sauce
- 1½ Tbsp (20mL) white vinegar
- 1 tsp (5mL) brown sugar
- ¼ tsp (1mL) finely grated ginger
- 1 small dried Thai red chili, finely chopped (keep the seeds)
- 2 cups (500mL) blanched and finely chopped baby bok choy (squeeze excess water out of bok choy before chopping)
- ¾ cup (150mL) finely chopped oyster mushrooms
- ¾ cup (150mL) finely chopped fresh Chinese black mushrooms
- ¾ cup (150mL) finely chopped brown shimeji mushrooms
- ½ tsp (2mL) sea salt
- a pinch of ground black pepper
- a pinch of brown sugar
- ½ Tbsp (10mL) sesame oil
- 1 package Shanghai wonton wrappers
- small bowl of water (for sealing the edges of the wrappers)
for the dipping sauce
In a small saucepan, combine the water, soy sauce, and vinegar. Warm over very low heat for 2 minutes, then add the brown sugar, and stir until it dissolves (about 2 minutes). Remove from heat; add the ginger and red chili, then stir well. Adjust the amount of chili for your preferred level of heat. Chill in the fridge while you make the wontons.
for the wontons
NOTE: Shanghai wonton wrappers are trapezoid-shaped and can be found at Double Happiness Foods, 429 Powell Street, Vancouver. doublehappinessfoods.com
Combine the baby bok choy, oyster mushrooms, Chinese black mushrooms, and shimeji mushrooms in a large bowl, and mix well. Season with sea salt, black pepper, brown sugar, and sesame oil, and mix again.
Take one wonton wrapper and check which side feels drier to the touch. The drier side will often be whiter from the flour. Place the drier side down on the open palm of one hand, with the narrower side of the wrapper at the bottom of your palm. Scoop 1 tablespoon of filling and place it in the centre of the wrapper. Lightly dip the tip of your opposite hand's index finger in the bowl of water. Do not wet your finger too much. Draw two short vertical lines on each side of the filling, as though writing an "11" with the filling in between. Then draw a very short dash above the filling. Fold the wrapper around the filling from the bottom to the top, gently pressing the moistened sides and top together to ensure a tight seal, leaving a tiny edge.
Rotate the wonton so that the top edge of the wonton is now at the bottom. Moisten the very tip of the top right corner of the wrapper. Holding the wonton in both hands, use your thumbs to gently press the filling up and out to the sides while folding the wonton in half from top to bottom. Do your best to line the edges up. Then bring the right and left corners of the top edge together, pressing the left onto the right, ensuring a tight seal.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Carefully lower the wontons into the water, and turn the heat down to medium high. Very gently stir them. Once they start to float to the surface, in 2–3 minutes, they are ready. Remove them from the pot with a slotted spoon and serve in large shallow bowls to prevent them from sticking together. Serve with the dipping sauce on the side.
Editor's note: For a demonstration of folding Shanghai wontons, see vimeo.com/8661389