Eggplant-Chard Won Ton Soup
- Prep Time 0:30
- Cook Time 0:25
- Estimated Cost $8.00
- 4 Comments
I made this partly because I had been thinking about (and lusting after) the delicious shitake mushroom dumpling dish I made at Namu a few months ago, and also because my vegetable bin was starting to overflow with nearly-old-enough-to-be-thrown-out produce. The easiest and least wasteful way to deal with this situation that I know of is to make broth. The aging bell pepper, the almost-shrively corn cob, the withering spinach, the soft tomato all went in with the broth seasonings and water, infusing it with rich flavor. After serving their purpose, it was straight into the compost bin.
These dumplings are completely vegan, yet satisfying even to carnivores, thanks to the meaty eggplant. This is a great way to take advantage of absorbent eggplant’s tendency to soak up whatever you put on it, so don’t be shy with the soy sauce, ginger or garlic.
- 1 whole onion, skin intact, roughly chopped $0.50
- 10 garlic cloves (4 with skin intact, smashed, 3 minced, 2 sliced thinly) Pantry
- 8 tbsp soy sauce, divided Pantry
- 2 tbsp honey or sugar, divided Pantry
- salt and pepper to taste Pantry
- 1 tbsp vegetable or olive oil Pantry
- 6 leaves chard, chopped, tough stem/veins removed, or 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped $1.50
- 2 shallots, diced $0.50
- 1 medium eggplant, finely diced $1.50
- 1 1" piece ginger, peeled and minced (about 2 tsp) $0.50
- 24 small square won ton wrappers $1.50 for 14 oz.
- 1 cup sugar snap peas, cut into 1" pieces $0.50
- 2 carrots, julienned or shredded $0.50
- 3 scallions, sliced $1 for a bunch
Recipe Serves 3-5
- To make the broth, combine onion (with skin intact), 4 smashed garlic cloves (with skin intact), 5 tbsp soy sauce and 1 tbsp sugar or honey in a large pot. Feel free to add any random vegetables hanging around your fridge. Just chop them roughly and throw them in. Add 8 cups water, stir well and cover. Cook, covered over medium-high heat for 15-20 minutes, or until very fragrant. Strain, remove solids and return liquid to pot. Taste for seasoning and adjust as desired.
- In a large frying pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chard or spinach, shallots, eggplant, ginger, remaining sugar or honey and 3 minced garlic cloves. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes, or until eggplant is cooked through and chard has softened. Transfer to a cool plate or baking sheet and allow to cool, about 5 minutes (this can be done while the broth cooks).
- To make the dumplings, set won ton wrappers on a clean, dry surface. Use a pastry brush or your fingers to coat the edges of the won ton wrappers lightly with water.
- Use a spoon to place about 1 1/2 tbsp of filling in the center of each wrapper.
- Gently pinch the corners together to form a point and tightly seal the edges to lock in the filling. Make sure to press the air out of the middle of the dumplings as excess air will cause them to fall apart during cooking.
- Add the sliced garlic, sugar snap peas and carrots to the broth and bring to a light boil over high heat.
- Cook the dumplings in the boiling broth until they float and appear nearly translucent, 5-6 minutes.
- Serve hot in bowls, garnished with the sliced scallions.