Monday, May 2, 2011

Mi Hoanh Thanh (Wonton Noodle Soup)

One of my favorite noodle soups has to be Mi Hoanh Thanh (Wonton Noodle Soup). I tend to order it ever time I stop by Tan Tan. Since Tan Tan is so far from my house and it gets pretty costly to eat out a lot, I thought why not make it at home. Since my followers are mostly students, I thought why not simplify the process of making the broth. It's almost as delectable as broth made using pork bones. The following recipe yields 4 servings.

All of the following can be prepared in advance except the egg noodles (they have to be used right after you boil them). The broth can be made and frozen for later use. The wontons can be frozen and thawed out for later use. The Xa Xiu can be made and refrigerated up to one week.

Quick 'n' Easy Broth:
  • 3 cans chicken broth (14 oz.)
  • 3 cans water (same can)
  • 1 Tbsp pork flavored soup base (see pic)
  • 1 tsp sugar

Wonton Filling:
*This recipe for wontons makes extra for later use
  • 1 lb. shrimp cut into small pieces
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 1-2 tsp salt (if you like your food less salty then only use 1)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • ½ tsp ground pepper
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 stalk green onion/scallions, finely minced
  • 2 shallots, finely minced

Other ingredients:
  • Xa xiu (BBQ pork)
  • Noh Char siu/xa xiu seasoning (see pic)
  • Egg noodles
  • Wonton wrapper
  • Cilantro
  • Green onion/scallions
  • Lettuce (green or red leaf works)
  • Chives
  • Bean Sprout (optional)

Step 1 – Preparing Xa Xiu/BBQ Pork
Cut your piece of pork into 1 inch by 2 in. strips (I used pork tenderloin). In a medium sized bowl, mix xa xiu seasoning with 1 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp sugar. Place pork in the marinade and mix well, then cover with plastic wrap, and let marinate overnight or at least 3 hours. When ready to cook, line a baking tray with a sheet of foil to cover the entire surface (easier to clean later). Bake in oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 30-35 minutes depending on your oven’s strength. When finished, let cool for 5 minutes then slice into thin slices (see pic).

Step 2 – Preparing Wonton
In a medium sized bowl, mix together ground pork, shrimp pieces, salt, sugar, pepper, soy sauce, sesame oil, green onion, and shallots. Spoon 1 teaspoon wonton filling into wonton wrapper, then spread a little bit of water around the edges of the wonton wrapper and pinch together. After you’re done making the wonton, you may freeze the extras, but if you layer the wonton in more than 2 layers, you must separate each layer with a piece of plastic wrap. I give each bowl about 6-7 wontons, but it’s up to you how many you want to use.

Step 3 – Preparing the Broth
Pour 3 cans of chicken broth and 3 cans of water into a medium-large pot. Then add pork soup base and sugar. Taste the broth to see if it is to your liking. Keep on medium high heat until ready to serve.

Step 4 – Preparing Wontons and Egg Noodles
In a medium sized pot, fill up halfway with water and bring to a boil. Then with a big spoon carefully drop wontons in the boiling water. Leave them in the boiling water for about 5 minutes or until they start to float. Spoon them out with a slotted spoon or a small handheld strainer (like the one you would use for pho). If some water has evaporated, you might want to add a bit more in and bring back to a boil. Then spread apart one clump of egg noodle and swirl around the strainer in the boiling water for 1 minute. Place each portion of egg noodle in to each bowl.

Final step – Preparing Herbs and Your Bowl
Wash and dry your lettuce, bean sprout, and chives. Assemble them on a plate and set aside. Chop some cilantro and green onion. Place wonton, pork slices and herbs on top of the egg noodles in each bowl. Bring your broth to a boil and serve. Top your noodle soup with shreds of lettuce, chives and bean sprouts. Good luck and enjoy!