Monday, December 18, 2017

Crab Rangoon and Insatiable Cravings

Sometimes I get a craving for Chinese food.

No...not the kind from a nice sit-down restaurant.
Not that (delicious) Asian Orange Chicken I make.

It's that super-Americanized, incredibly gluttonous, buffet-style Chinese food I crave.

Sesame chicken.
Egg rolls.
Beef and broccoli.
Fried rice.
Those super thin rice noodles.
A little bit of everything...
And crab rangoon dipped in gobs of sweet and sour sauce in the most unnatural shade of red possible.
That's a must.

It's not a craving I indulge in often, not at all.
However when the craving hits, it hits hard.

The other day I was fantasizing about all of that saucy, heat-lamped goodness and I realized, "Hey, I'm done with finals- I actually have time to cook!"
...and so began an indulgent afternoon filled with cream cheese, crab, and crispy fried wonton wrappers.

Sorry...not sorry.
I enjoyed every last bite- and froze more for later cravings!

So honestly, these things couldn't be easier if they tried.
Dump the ingredients for the filling in the mixer and blend them up.
Plop little spoonfuls of it on store-bought wonton wrappers, seal them up, and voilĂ - crab rangoon, right there in the convenience of your kitchen.
Best enjoyed wearing pajama pants and binge-watching your favorite show.  :-)

Have you ever used wonton wrappers before?  They're incredibly easy to work with.  Of course there are all kinds of shapes you can use when you make wontons, but honestly as long as you seal the edges they don't have to be pretty.

I made a big batch of these and froze the majority of them- just line a cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper and put your little (pre-fried) rangoons on it in a single layer.  Once they are frozen you can transfer them to a freezer bag.  I've already fried up another batch, they just take a few minutes to go from frozen solid to golden brown and gooey.

I'll definitely be keeping these around for when my next Chinese craving hits!

8 oz cream cheese
8 oz crab meat, drained well
1/3 C chopped green onions
1 clove crushed garlic
1 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp fish sauce
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp sesame oil
1 pinch cayenne pepper
60 (3.5 inch square) wonton wrappers
Canola oil for frying

1. Mix cream cheese, crab meat, green onions, garlic, soy sauce, fish sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, sesame oil, and cayenne pepper together with a fork (or in a mixer) until ingredients are blended thoroughly.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, 1 or 2 hours.

2. Keep wonton wrappers moist by covering with a damp paper towel.  Place a small bowl of water nearby on the work surface.  With a wet fingertip, moisten surface of wonton.  Place 1 1/2 teaspoons of crab filling in center of wonton.  Fold 2 opposite corners toward each other over the filling but without touching tips together yet.  Fold up the other 2 corners.  Working gently from the bottom, squeeze out any air bubbles; pinch together the 4 seams from the bottom up to create a modified pyramid (or "warhead") shape.  Place on a dry surface.  Continue with remaining wontons.

3. Heat oil in deep fryer to 350 degrees F.  Fry wontons in batches until golden brown and crispy, gently moving them around in the oil with a strainer to brown each surface, about 3 minutes.  Let cool about a minute before eating.

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