Won Tons
a most excellent deep-fried food

It is best to have several people around when you make won tons. That way no one gets stuck folding all of them. On the other hand, the fewer people there are, the more everyone gets to eat. Won ton wrappers can be found in the produce departments of large grocery stores, past the kohlrabi and before the mushrooms. Or look for an Asian grocery store if there is one near you. Get some tea while you're at it.

Cook in a skillet

˝ lb. sausage or ground pork

Drain most of the fat. Push sausage to one side, and sauté briefly

1 clove garlic, minced

Run sausage and garlic through meat grinder, along with

1 large onion, cut into eighths
1 celery stalk, cut into 1-inch sections
1 can water chestnuts, drained

If you have a wonderful antique meat grinder like Mrs. Bell's, remember to put a bowl under it so it doesn't drip onto your foot as you turn the crank.
Add to filling:

soy sauce
white pepper
ground ginger
a little cornstarch
a few drops sesame oil (optional)

Wrap the filling in

won ton wrappers

Heat peanut oil in a wok or large skillet. Cook three or four won tons at a time (or as many as you can keep track of without burning them). If there is air trapped in the won tons, they may inflate as they are cooking and become difficult to turn over. It sometimes helps to cook them briefly on one side, just enough that the dough is no longer elastic, then turn them quickly before they can inflate. The best cure is prevention: try to press all the excess air out of the won tons as you wrap them.

For won ton soup, heat a pan of lightly salted water to boiling, and drop the won tons in. Simmer until they are translucent and wrinkled and look like tiny brains. Remove them from the water using a slotted spoon, and transfer them to

chicken broth

to which you have added

soy sauce
rice wine vinegar
white pepper

Garnish with

sliced green onions

Leftover won tons can be reheated in a toaster oven. Bake them at 350° until they make a faint sizzling noise, then toast very briefly. Keep an eye on them while toasting, as they burn easily. In the event of Food Flare Up, keep door closed.

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Useful | Useless | Debatable