Of the many advantages to living in Vancouver, one in particular is easy access to Asian food. This came in handy last night, when my bestie’s Other Half showed up with the Alpha Dog* after a 16-hr drive south from the vicinity of Smithers (location: middle of nowhere, BC). The OH is a seriously fanatic fly fisherman. He had driven from his hometown, Portland, Oregon, up to the Smithers area for a week of catch-and-release. It was ultimately not to be: heavy rains caused the river waters to churn, not optimal for pursuit of this manly sport.
The trip wasn’t a total bust; the OH learned how to pluck and dress freshly slaughtered chickens (but that’s another story). The Alpha Dog flew up to Smithers to keep the OH company on the drive down, who had texted that he wanted wonton soup upon arrival. I thought he was kidding. It might have been raining along the Babine River, but down here in civilization it was kinda hot.
I wasn’t taking chances, though, and headed to my neighborhood Chinese bakery-delicatessen to buy two dozen fresh-frozen chicken wonton, no MSG added. I had chicken stock in the freezer, and gone-to-seed dillweed left from making pickles. I was ready.
Sure enough, when the two drove up at 8:30 pm, the OH still wanted wonton soup. I sprung into action, sautéeing celery, carrots and leeks, then adding the stock, and when simmering, the wonton. It was 20 minutes tops, start to finish, which just goes to show: whole food can be fast food. Of course, it does help to live in a town where fresh-frozen wonton, no MSG added, are available in corner stores, and where a house wouldn’t be a home without chicken stock in the freezer.
Emergency Wonton Soup
You can always use store-bought chicken stock for the soup. The mirepoix deepens the flavor. And vegetable stock works just as well, too.
2 medium carrots, sliced
2 medium celery stalks, sliced
2 medium leeks, sliced, white and light-green parts only
2 quarts chicken stock, homemade or store bought
2 dozen chicken wonton
6 sprigs fresh dill (or one head of dill weed gone to seed)
Sea salt to taste
Coarse pepper to taste
- Sauté carrots, celery and leeks over medium heat till softened, but not mushy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add stock. Bring to boil, then simmer. Add wonton, then simmer another 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Then dill. Simmer 2 more minutes, then serve.