Growing up, the only wontons I ever knew were the kind that filled my quart of wonton soup from the local Chinese takeout shop. You know what I'm talking about: thick and noodle-y, and filled with a pork meatball surprise. In those days I never imagined that the wonton wrapper (a dough of flour, egg, and water) could be delicate, let alone crafted into a dessert. But it can. These chocolate wontons are a whole new way of enjoying the beautiful, thin wonton skins which are readily available these days in the supermarket.
When fried, the dough crisps up into a crunchy but delicate shell that shatters as soon as you bite into it. For this reason, fried wontons make the perfect pouch for any sort of sweet filling you can think of, even if it's (dare I say?) not chocolate.
Keep a few things in mind when making fried wontons and it'll go off without a hitch. Assemble just a few at a time to guarantee that the dough is moist and supple. Also, don't try to fry it all in one batch—the temperature of the oil will drop and the wontons won't fry properly (it only takes about 45 seconds for them to fry anyway, so it's nice and quick). Above all, do not overfill the wrappers. It'll be tempting to make a plump little wonton filled with chocolate, but you'll seriously run the risk of chocolate seeping out into the oil and burning on the bottom of the pot (this definitely happened to me).
Wonton dough isn't sweet, so to top it off, I dust them with a mixture of confectioners' sugar and, for an Asian touch, Chinese five-spice powder (a mixture of star anise, cloves, cinnamon, pepper, and fennel.) Gobble them up while still warm and the chocolate is good and gooey. Even better, add a scoop of ice cream and you'll have a delicious plated dessert full of contrasting temperature and textures.
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About the Author: Yvonne Ruperti is a food writer, recipe developer, former bakery owner, and author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Easy Artisan Bread. You can also watch her culinary stylings on the America's Test Kitchen television show. She presently lives in Singapore as a freelance writer for Time Out Singapore. Check out her blog: shophousecook.com . Follow Yvonne on Twitter.