January 1, 2009

Hot and Sour Soup

There is nothing like starting the new year than with a big bowl of steaming Hot and Sour Soup. This will definetely keep my husband smiling and the warmth in on such a cold first day to 2009.
Firstly, after experimenting with many recipes for this yummy soup, I finally finagled a soup that tastes very similar to what you may get at a Chinese restaurant. You will find this quick, easy and very tasty. Enjoy!

Wine Pairing: Riesling would pair quite nicely.
If you want a sparkling wine, try Italian Prosecco, it has a lemon-lime flair and goes great with asian dishes.

Hot and Sour Soup
Serves 4-6 appetizer servings

1 package (1 oz.) dried black Chinese mushrooms
or 1 can straw mushrooms
4 ounces firm tofu, drained and cubed (optional)
5 cups chicken broth
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon hot chili oil
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 cup cooked shredded pork
1 cup drained canned bamboo shoots cut into thin strips
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 egg white, slightly beaten
3 scallions thinly sliced
1 teaspoon sesame oil

Place dried mushrooms in bowl, cover with warm water and soak for 20 minutes to soften. Drain and squeeze out excess water. Discard stems and slice caps.
Combine broth, vinegar, soy sauce, chili oil and pepper in medium pot. Bring to boil or high heat, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 2 minutes.
Stir in mushrooms, tofu, pork and bamboo shoots and heat to boiling.

Blend water into cornstarch in small bowl until smooth. Stir this into soup. Cook and stir for 4 minutes or until soup is thickened and boiling.
Remove from heat. Stirring in one direction, slowly pour egg white in a thin stream into soup. Stir in onions and sesame oil.

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