I've encountered many food craving phases
throughout my years ..
It's never clear what brings them on .. letting them run their course seems the only viable option .. and I tell you what .. that can be a while
A few of the most memorable include .. eating pasta with cheese & ketchup as a kid .. a chef salad at lunch time during the years I commuted to an office .. the craving for greek yogurt pancakes having run its course in just the past few months .. being proceeded by
Hot and Sour Soup
It started innocently enough .. a couple of years ago .. stopping by a local Chinese restaurant for an order of egg drop soup .. The Chef wasn't feeling well
A cute couple sat in a booth sharing a bowl of Hot and Sour .. it smelled incredible ..
“I'll take one of those as well”
I was pretty much all she wrote from that moment on .. every day for the next few weeks I stopped .. out of the blue, becoming a regular at a place I'd only driven by for the past 20 years
“Your usual Hot & Sour.. What kind of meat? Noodles on the side?”
Alas .. time to make my own
After trying many variations .. this recipe was my favorite. That is .. until I heard from my wonderful sister-in-law. She and my brother are world travelers .. having visited Hong Kong, on at least one occasion.
I didn't realize .. but one of their favorite things to do while on vacation is take cooking lessons from local establishments. She shared her recipe for the Hot and Sour Soup .. a treasure from a class while they were in China.
This week I reached for her recipe again ..
The recipe is everything you want it to be .. don't worry about the long list of ingredients .. all the effort is in the chopping & slicing .. once you start cooking the soup .. you're nearly finished.
ps: Hot and Sour Soup made its first appearance on The Veggies site in February 2014. I couldn't help but share the recipe again .. with updated pictures .. for those that may have missed it in the archives.
pps: Cooking classes while on vacation in other countries .. What a fun idea!
Authentic Hot & Sour Soup
- 3-6 cloves garlic grated
- 3-5 Tbsp fresh ginger grated
- 8 oz - 1.25# ground pork ** or 1/2 ground pork, 1/2 blood sausage
- 6 scallions minced (** be sure to save some for a garnish, as well)
- 8 cups chicken or turkey stock
- 30 grams wood ear mushrooms rehydrated in hot water, sliced thin, cut into 1" lengths
- 2-4 tsp salt
- black pepper to taste
- 2-3 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 cup firm tofu sliced, 1-2" lengths
- 3 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2/3 - 1 cup black vinegar
- 2-3 Tbsp Shoaxing wine
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- In a wok, heat oil over high heat. Saute garlic & ginger for 1 min, add ground pork, stirring and breaking into pieces (about 3-5 mins), add scallions and continue to cooking until almost done
- Add stock and bring to simmer
- Add mushrooms
- Taste and season with salt, pepper & red pepper flakes until desired flavor & heat.
- Add tofu
- Add soy sauce, black vinegar & shoaxing wine. Taste & adjust accordingly
- Turn off heat & add the sesame oil
- Serve & garnish with scallions