Hot and Sour Soup

Hot and Sour Soup

It is pretty obvious that I enjoy making and eating soup.  Hot and Sour Soup is one of the soup that I made often at home.  To some people, it is an acquired taste, since most Americanized Chinese restaurants serve sweet and sour combination. Even there, the sourness is almost nonexistence.  It is a pretty hearty soup, with plenty of goodies.  To add more sweetness to the soup, morsel of pork can be added too.  A word of warning, in many Chinese recipes, measurement is usually not provided.  Sometimes when I ask my dad for his recipes, he would say, a dash of this and a tad of that.  I will provide the best measurement possible, but of course, you may adjust seasoning to your taste.

Hot and Sour Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cup of chicken stock (if chicken stock is not handy or you are a vegetarian, you can always simmer shitake mushroom in water to make a mushroom base)
  • half box of soft tofu (the usual packaging that I found in the market varies from 12-14 oz, or 350-425g), cubed
  • 3-5 Shitake mushroom, soaked until soft, then slice.
  • a handful of woodear, soak with hot water, then thinly slice. (Woodear is a type of edible fungus, check here for more details)
  • Bamboo, slice to thin strips
  • 1/2 Tablespoon soy sauce 
  • 1-2 Tablespoon white rice vinegar
  • 1/2 Tablespoon black vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • green onion, chopped to garnish
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 Tablespoon of potato starch with 1 1/2 Tablespoon of water.  If you prefer thicker soup, reduce water.
  • salt to taste.
  • Drizzle of sesame oil.

Directions

  1. Bring chicken stock or shitake liquor to a boil, and put in cubed tofu.
  2. Bring the heat down to medium, when the broth simmers again, put in mushroom, bamboo slices, and woodear.  Bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Add in all the condiments, thoroughly stir the mixture.  If the seasoning is not to your taste, adjust accordingly.  
  4. When the soup is boiling, turn off the heat.  Drizzle in beaten egg and starch/water mixture, and stir.  If you do not, the egg will stick at the bottom, and the starch mixture will be coagulate into a big goo.
  5. Garnish with green onion.

There is a lot of preparation work, but the actual cooking time is not that long.  Bon appetite!  

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