Gluten-Free Vegetarian Dumplings/Won Tons

So dumplings are not the world’s most alkaline food – but sometimes you gotta live a little, you know, keep things interesting in the kitchen. I made these during the Labour Day long weekend at a feast that celebrated ‘your favourite food when you were a child’. The biggest challenge is making the won ton wrappers but this recipe is pretty straight-forward. Fill the won tons with your favourite delicious treats!

Pastry Ingredients:
1 cup of all-purpose gluten-free flour (plain)
1/2 teaspoon of xanthan gum
1 extra-large egg and 1 extra-large egg white, beaten together
2-4 tablespoons warm water

Filling ingredients:
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1 handful of bean shoots, finely chopped
1 handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped
1 small can of water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
1 small can of bamboo shoots, drained and finely chopped
1/2 zucchini, finely chopped
3 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked in boiling water to soften and then finely chopped
2 teaspoons of fresh ginger, grated
1/4 block of silken tofu, mashed
1 dash of tamari (wheat free soya sauce)
1 splash of sesame oil

Water in a mug/small bowl
Tamari with a squeeze of lime for dipping sauce (or sauce of your choice)

1. To make the pastry… In a medium-size bowl, combine the gluten-free flour and xanthan gum. Add the eggs and 2 tablespoons water to the flour mixture and beat together to combine.
2. Press the mixture together with wet hands. It should stick together when pressed, and should have a smooth but stiff consistency. Add more water a tablespoon at a time until it reaches the proper consistency.
3. Separate the dough into two disks. Roll out each disk between two sheets of plastic wrap or baking paper until they’re about 1/8 inch thick.
4. Remove the plastic wrap/baking paper, dust both sides with more flour, and slice into desired shapes with a sharp knife.
5. Now prepare the filling ingredients… heat a splash of sesame oil to a saucepan/frypan and add all chopped ingredients (including shitake mushrooms), stir until soft.
6. Add tamari and cook for approx 1 minute.
7. Remove from heat, place cooked filling ingredients in bowl and put in fridge/freezer to cool.
8. Once ingredients are cool, set up some bench space to wrap the won tons.
9. This is how I wrap my won tons but the sky’s the limit in terms of design and how you want them to look…
Place a small teaspoon of mixture in the centre of the won ton.
Wet your fingers with the water and run them around the outside of the won ton pastry so that the pastry is slightly damp.
Fold up each corner to the centre so it looks like a mini pyramid. Squeeze the sides together and then the top. Voila!
10. Steam in bamboo or metal steamer for around 10 minutes, you’ll know when the pastry is cooked when it becomes more transparent.

Thanks to Nicole Hunn’s book ‘Gluten-Free on a Shoestring’ —
Thanks to my Dad for the great childhood memories of making wontons.

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