If you ever eat at a Chinese Restaurant with me, you should expect crab rangoon to be the dining companion I enjoy most at the table. It’s not that your conversation bores me, that you have poor manners, or even that you chew a little too loudly for my delicate ears, per se, it’s mainly just that, try as you might, you’re not fried, stuffed, and puffed with cream cheese and crab meat.
You couldn’t help matters even if you tried.
And I, well I can’t necessarily help the way I routinely pour boiling oolong tea into my teensy teacup and onto my right hand every six minutes and read aloud the animals associated with the Chinese Zodiac. I’m the year of the rat, I should mention.
One thing that we can come together on, thankfully, is our meal. In fact, I’m happy to eat whatever you’d like. Go ‘head and order whatever your precious heart desires…so long as it involves a large order of steamed shrimp with mixed vegetables, brown rice molded meticulously into a dome, two crab rangoon, two chicken fingers, one spring roll, a tub (and a ladle) full of duck sauce, one fortune cookie, and three of those pastel and chalky after dinner mints with the liquid centers.
But really, whatever you like.
Just don’t forget the shrimp…
…or the spring roll!
…oh and ask them if they’ll mound the rice like I like it…
yes, in that upside down bowl shape.
…uh huh and just be sure the kitchen staff has two gallons more duck sauce where that came from…
Mmmhmm a ladle will work.
…that’s it! I’m zipping my lip.
…nothing more I could ever want in the world…
nope, not a thing.
…but just to be saf– how many rangoon are you planning to eat? Because we could get two orders you know…
Crab Rangoon must be on everyone’s list of favorite things.
On Sunday, after I made Buffalo Chicken Rolls, lunched on them, suffered a mild stroke, napped, and then revived myself with lemon-lime seltzer, I dreamt up a plan to use the rest of those egg roll wrappers.
I just hated the thought of them slowly rotting in my fridge. I cut each one into four squares, essentially making them the size of their wonton wrap relative, and then made a delicious filling inspired by my favorite Chinese appetizer. They’re wonderful. Crisp to the bite, but creamy, rich, and wildly flavorful inside. The taste isn’t all that similar to traditional rangoon filled with crab (imitation, in most cases), but it’s in the same vein. The taste is bolder, sharper. Feel free to substitute canned salmon, canned crab, or even shredded chicken.
For such a simple recipe, these are such a treat. Easy because I always have tuna on hand. And they’re healthy too. At only 50 calories a pop, they’d be perfect snacks for the Super Bowl this Sunday.
Here’s how they’re made:
In a medium bowl, combine a can of tuna, minced garlic, finely minced scallion, sour cream, cream cheese, soy sauce, salt and pepper.
Lay 16 small wonton wrappers out on a clean work surface. I used egg roll wrappers and cut 4 of them into 4 small, even squares. Wonton and egg roll wrappers are in the produce section of most grocery stores, near the tofu.
Spoon a teaspoon or two onto the center of each wrapper. Do not overfill them or they won’t seal.
Using a small pastry brush or your finger, moisten two of the sides of each wonton wrapper. Fold them over so that the corners meet and press the edges firmly to seal.
Place the filled wontons on a wire rack set on top of a cookie sheet, spray them well with nonstick cooking spray, and bake for about 10-12 minutes at 400 degrees F, or until they begin to turn a light golden brown. Baking them on a rack allows the hot air of the oven to flow around all sides of them, yielding a better and more even crisp.
Serve them with duck sauce or any sweet soy-ginger sauce you like.
6 oz can of solid white albacore tuna in water, drained and flaked
3 tablespoons sour cream
3 tablespoons cream cheese
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 scallion, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
1 garlic clove, minced
Pinch each salt and pepper
Small bowl of water
Nonstick cooking spray
Duck sauce, for serving
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a medium bowl, mix the tuna, sour cream, cream cheese, soy sauce, scallion and garlic.
Lay the wonton wrappers on a clean work surface. Spoon one teaspoon of the tuna mixture onto the center of each wrapper. Use a pastry brush or your finger, dip it in water, and moisten two of the four sides of the wrapper. Fold over so that the corners meet and press firmly to seal the tuna filling inside.
Place all filled wontons on a wire rack set on top of a cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until they begin to turn a light golden brown.
Serve with duck sauce.
Nutrition information for 1 tuna rangoon:
Calories: 49.5, Fat: 1.6g, Cholesterol: 7.8mg, Sodium: 89.9mg, Carb: 4.8g, Fiber: 0.1g, Sugars: 0g, Protein: 3.7g