Wonton soup

Now here's something to ward away those winter sniffles, a delicious and simple Asian-inspired soup with dumplings.  As my mum would say, it'll warm the cockles of your heart!  The recipe looks long, now that I've typed it, but it's dead-set easy and don't be put off by the steps involved.

You can make and freeze both the soup and the dumplings, just don't freeze them together.

And get your kids involved with the dumplings - they love to make them.

4 cups (1 litre) chicken stock *
3 cups water
1 clove garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
3cm chunk of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1.5 tablep (30ml) soy sauce
drizzle of sesame oil

200g chicken mince
3 large spring onions, pale part only, finely chopped
small handful of coriander or basil leaves, chopped
2 teasp soy sauce
1 packet of wonton wrappers **

1 small carrot, peeled and cut into very thin matchsticks (optional)
2-3 button mushrooms, thinly sliced (optional)
1 spring onion, green part thinly sliced for garnish

* use homemade stock or buy a carton from the supermarket.  Please don't use stock cubes.
** wonton wrappers are available in the fridge section of the supermarket, normally near the fresh pasta (ravioli, lasagne sheets etc)

Method - Soup

Place stock, water, garlic and ginger in a stockpot and simmer for 5 mins.  Use a strainer to remove the ginger and garlic leaving just the liquid in the stockpot.  Add soy sauce and sesame oil.

Method - Dumplings

Mix the chicken, spring onions, herbs and soy sauce in a bowl till well combined.

Place a heaped teaspoon of the mixture in the middle of a wonton wrapper.  Dip your finger in a small bowl of water then wet the edge of the wonton wrapper then form the dumpling in any shape you like (just bunch it up if that's easiest).

Method - to finish

Bring soup to the boil then add carrot and mushroom (if using) and dumplings.  Simmer for 6-7 minutes so that the dumplings are cooked.  Use a ladle to place some dumpling in each bowl then pour over some soup.  Garnish with sliced spring onions and serve.

Serves: approx 5-6 people
Makes: approx 24 wontons

Freezing instructions

Freeze: pour the cooled soup into containers and freeze.  Place the dumplings in a ziplock bag and freeze.

Defrost: soup - in the fridge or microwave.  Wontons - no need, just add to the boiling soup while they are still frozen.  Allow an extra 2-3 mins of cooking time.