Meat-Vegetable Dumplings (Wontons, or Chinese Chiao Tze)

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Meat-Vegetable Dumplings (Wontons, or Chinese Chiao Tze)

Millie’s famous wontons are similar to the boiled wontons you get in soup at Chinese restaurants, but hers are deep-fried and infinitely more delectable. She usually uses a non-hydrogenated corn oil for frying, although other kinds of oil, such as peanut, sesame, or safflower, are fine. She saves and reuses the oil, boiling a couple of slices of raw potato in it to remove strong flavors.

Yield: Serves 6.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound Chinese cabbage or spinach, minced
  • 3 green onions including stems, or 1 small onion, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root, or 1/2 teaspoon ground
  • 1 tablespoon sherry or cooking wine
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 package egg-roll wrappers
  • Oil for deep-frying


Combine all but last two ingredients and mix well. Stir for 5 to 10 minutes. Set aside in refrigerator for an hour. Take 1 package of wrappings -- usually called egg-roll wrappers or spring-roll casings -- and cut each casing into 4 squares, each about 3 to 4 inches on a side. Place about 1 teaspoon of the filling in the center of the wrapper, moisten around the edges, and fold over to seal meat inside. Heat oil to 375 degrees F and cook 6 to 8 wontons at a time for 4 to 5 minutes. Be careful not to crowd them or add too many, which would lower the temperature of the oil too much. Refrigerate the filled wrappers if you must wait a while before cooking them.

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