Boxed foods seem to have gotten a pretty bad rap lately. People complain that they are full of sodium, lacking on nutrients, void of color, and totally missing true flavors. Recently though, it seems my best meals have come from a box…a big brown Bountiful Baskets Super box to be exact. Apparently I am a Sucker for a Super Pack. The Super Bowl Hostess Pack was a definite win, the Valentine Super Pack melted my heart, and now the Super Asian Pack is sending my taste buds on an all-expense-paid trip to the Orient. I figure I will get two or even three full meals out of this fabulous box and I can guarantee all of these “boxed meals” will be chock full of flavor, nutrients, and vibrant colors!
The first of my Super Asian Pack boxed meals was my fabulous “Baked Won Tons With Blackberry Asian Dipping Sauce”. This is a fun meal to put together. The filling is easy and, once all the veggies are chopped, there are some great ways to get the kiddos involved. The young ones will have fun mixing the filling, and the older crowd will enjoy filling and wrapping the won tons. The filling is very versatile. I use shredded chicken because that was what I had on hand but ground or shredded pork would work beautifully. The veggies can easily be added or taken away depending on what you have on hand. Thanks to my box, and a well-stocked pantry, I had a beautiful assortment of fresh flavors to toss in the filling.
The Won Ton wraps from the box were great and I still have some left over to use in my lasagna tomorrow. Yes, believe it or not, won ton wrappers make great lasagna noodles and don’t have those annoyingly Americanized little ripples on the sides. But, that is a discussion for a whole other plate…back to the recipe at hand. By baking the won tons I get all the crunch with far less fat. Just lightly brush or spray a lined baking sheet, lay out the filled won tons, then lightly brush or spray the tops and bake at 425. In about 12 minutes you will have lovely browned treats that are sure to please any pallet.
Won tons are a fun finger foods and fun finger foods demand one thing…dip! This dipping sauce is my own little creation. I usually make it with raspberries but, since I had a flat of blackberries to put to use I decided to mix things up. And am I glad I did. The blackberries compliment the chicken nicely and worked well with the spicy red chilies, the soy sauce, and the sesame oil. They were more tart than the raspberries I have used for this in the past, but that was nothing that a couple Tablespoons of brown sugar couldn’t fix. The sauce came out to be the perfect consistency for our taste but, if you want it thinner just whisk in a bit of juice, if you want it thicker just heat to a boil and add a bit of cornstarch or liquid pectin.
I served the won tons with an Asian Broccoli Slaw that gave a great crunch and tied all the flavors together (and used up a bunch of broccoli that had somehow escaped my menu plans last week). I have to brag- this meal was a total hit. As they walked away feeling like they had eaten a happy dose of junk food, my family had no idea that they had actually inhaled several healthy portions of veggies, along with a powerhouse of herbs and spices. And all this from boxed foods. Maybe what we need is not fewer boxed meals but a new idea of what is found inside the box. What we really need is more Bountiful Baskets SUPER boxed meals! SO, let’s start a boxed meal revolution. What boxed meals are YOU making this week?