A celebratory feast in these time-poor days calls for a fuss-free banquet with spice, texture, colour and vibrancy on the palate (and on the plate). This soup makes a great first course (or main meal - see note at bottom). It uses wontons stuffed with prawn, but you could use chicken or pork mince instead if you prefer.
200g egg noodles, cooked
1 head baby bok choy leaves, blanched
500g raw prawns, peeled, deveined and finely chopped
1 tbsp ginger, finely chopped
2 tbsp coriander leaf, finely chopped
2 tbsp spring onions, finely chopped
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp yellow bean soy sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil
16 wonton skins
4 cups chicken stock
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp ginger, julienned
1 tbsp spring onion, julienned freshly ground white pepper and
sea salt, to taste
To make the wonton mixture, mix the chopped prawn meat together with all the other ingredients except the wonton skins.
Lay out a wonton skin and put 1 tbsp of prawn mixture into the centre. Brush 2 edges of the skin lightly with water and fold the skins in half at an angle to enclose the filling and seal the edges. Place the wonton aside and repeat with the remaining 15 wonton skins.
To make the soup, heat the chicken stock in a pan over medium heat. When it comes to a simmer, add soy sauce, ginger and spring onions then reduce the heat to a very gentle simmer. Add a pinch of ground white pepper. Check the seasoning and if necessary adjust with a little more soy or sea salt.
In a separate pot of simmering water, gently cook the wontons for about 3 minutes until just soft. Remove from the water and divide between 4 large bowls. Divide the noodles and bok choy between the 4 bowls and pour over the seasoned stock. Serve immediately.
* By adding a bit more stock and doubling the noodles, you can transform the wontons and soup into a nice big "one pot" meal.
- More Chinese banquet recipe ideas
Photography by William Meppem. Food styling by Hannah Meppem. Food preparation by Nick Banbury.