Hot and Sour Soup

Recently I started watching the cooking show “Chinese Food Made Easy” on the cooking channel. I love asian food but sometimes cooking it seems intimidating. This show really does simplify it for you.

We made this hot and sour soup and it was SO good. I might prefer to do tofu instead of shredded chicken next time. We’ll see. If you make the soup in advance the flavors have time to seep into the cooked chicken. But when you add cooked chicken to the soup, to me, the flavor is lacking. The next day the chicken tasted much better in the soup. You could leave out any protein all together and it would still be delicious.

INGREDIENTS

Soup Base

  • 1 tablespoon peanut, vegetable, or canola oil
  • 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 handfuls fresh shiitake mushrooms, sliced or 1 small handful dried Chinese mushrooms, reconstituted and sliced
  • 1 red chile, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Shaohsing rice wine or dry sherry
  • 3 cups vegetable stock, hot
  • 1 (8 ounce) can bamboo shoots, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon regular soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon black rice vinegar (recommended: Chinkiang) or balsamic vinegar
  • Pinch freshly cracked white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch, blended with 2 tablespoons cold water

For service

  • 7 ounces cooked egg noodles
  • 2 small handfuls bean sprouts
  • 8 fresh baby corns, sliced
  • 1 scallion, sliced
  • 3 1/2 ounces cooked chicken, shredded

DIRECTIONS

For the soup base:
Heat a wok over high heat, add the oil, and stir-fry the ginger and mushrooms until softened.
Add the chile, Shaohsing rice wine, hot vegetable stock, bamboo shoots, soy sauces, black rice vinegar and the white pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil, thicken with the cornstarch slurry and set aside over low heat. (note: I used balsamic vinegar instead of black rice vinegar and I used 2 Tablespoons of light soy sauce because I didn’t have regular soy sauce.)

For service:
In some bowls, layer some of the cooked egg noodles with the raw bean sprouts, raw sliced baby corn, and spring onions. Top everything with the shredded chicken, and then spoon plenty of the soup base over the ingredients. Give the noodle pot or bowl a good stir, and serve immediately.
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