Advertisements

Don’t ask what’s in the soup!

I don’t remember much from my first experience eating at a Chinese restaurant except for two things. The first was the paper wrapped chicken appetizer. I could have eaten a meal of them. The second was the soup. It was egg drop and I remembered it as unappealing and very, very bland. For a number of years after that I would skip any soup at a Chinese restaurant and try to double up on the appetizers.

In high school, I lived in Southern California and finally had access to decent Chinese food. I went to a local restaurant with a girlfriend and her family and we ordered the standard dinner. Appetizers were good. Salad was nondescript, but not bad. Then the soup arrived. It wasn’t egg drop. It was darker and had all of these weird things in it. I tried to pass, but was strongly encouraged to try it. I took another look and the black things in it looked like eel. I didn’t eat much seafood at the time and definitely did not eat eel. Plus there was this wispy white stuff in it.

Not wanting to look like I was afraid to try it (as the girlfriend’s family had dug right into the soup), I cautiously scooped up a bit of it and took a sip. It has a little kick and loads of flavor. Another scoop, this time getting some of the unidentified solids. Great taste. I ate the whole thing down. I tried not to think of what exotic thing could be in it. For many years after, I would always order the hot and sour soup and purposefully kept my ignorance about what was in it.

After I was married, I decided to make it on my own. Expecting I’d have to visit my local Asian food store and look for obscure ingredients, I was shocked to see it was made of all typical ingredients. And the eel? Wood ear mushrooms.

I’ll sometimes add some crunchy noodles in at the end.

Look. No eel!

I always buy the extra firm tofu and cut it into strips about one inch long.

You have to re-hydrate the mushrooms in hot water. After that, I always dice them, else you will get a very long piece of eel…I mean mushroom.

Cook everything up.

The white wispy stuff? Egg whites swirled in the pot.

Go ahead. Ask what is in it.

HOT & SOUR SOUP

Prep Time: 15 mins |  Cook Time: 13 mins  | Servings: Servings: 4 | Difficulty: easy

Ingredients:

  • 6 dried wood-ear mushrooms
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 Tbs reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs chili-garlic sauce
  • 3 Tbs rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp Asian (dark) sesame oil
  • ½ lb reduced-fat soft tofu, drained and cut into ½-inch cubes
  • 8 ounce can bamboo shoots, drained and thinly sliced
  • 2½ Tbs cornstarch
  • 3 Tbs water
  • 1 large egg white, lightly beaten with 1 Tablespoon water

Directions:

1. Combine dried mushrooms with enough hot water to cover by 2 inches in a small bowl; let stand 15 minutes, then drain.

2. Bring the broth, soy sauce, chili-garlic sauce, vinegar, and sesame oil to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the drained mushrooms, tofu and bamboo shoots. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Combine the cornstarch and water in a small bowl; stir in about ¼-cup of the hot liquid, then return to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture boils and thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat; slowly drizzle the egg mixture into the soup while stirring in a circular motion. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Info:

Nutritional Information Per Serving Calories 115 Calories from Fat 25 Total Fat 3.25g Saturated Fat .5g Cholesterol 0mg Sodium 709g Potassium 557mg Carbohydrates 19g Dietary Fiber 2.5g Sugar 3.3g Net Carbs 16.5g Protein 8g

Source: http://www.recipegirl.com/2008/10/14/hot-and-sour-soup/

Advertisements

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Chinese, Eggs, kosher, Low Carb, Lunch, Recipes, Soup and Stew, Vegetable

Author:The Ranting Chef

Check out the best recipes at rantingchef.com

33 Comments on “Don’t ask what’s in the soup!”

  1. May 11, 2012 at 11:02 am #

    My husband loves this kind of soup. Me not so much. Can’t wait to try this out.

    Like

  2. May 11, 2012 at 11:04 am #

    Very nice.

    Like

  3. May 11, 2012 at 11:06 am #

    Love miso soup=the best

    Like

  4. May 11, 2012 at 11:07 am #

    Yum…wish I had a bowl right now. On the list to try!

    Like

  5. May 11, 2012 at 11:09 am #

    I love this soup and usually order it when I’m at a Chinese restaurant. Mmm!

    Like

  6. Somer
    May 11, 2012 at 11:11 am #

    That’s my favorite soup! I remember when learning how to make it finding out about wood ear mushrooms too! Funny.

    Like

  7. May 11, 2012 at 11:19 am #

    Looks delicious. I usually stick to miso soup, but this homemade recipe I would give a try.

    Like

  8. pharphelonus
    May 11, 2012 at 11:38 am #

    Love sweet and sour soup. Thanks!

    Like

  9. May 11, 2012 at 11:39 am #

    I was once served a revolting-looking dish called something like Buddha’s Delight – it was gloopy and brown and slithery. Vegan, though, I was told. I couldn’t refuse without serious offence, so I tried it. I saw why Buddha fancied it. Utterly delicious – mainly mushrooms and lily flowers – still looked ghastly, but ignore the appearance and enjoy the flavour…
    (btw thanks for following!)

    Like

  10. May 11, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    One of my favorite soups. I agree that Egg Drop soup can be a bland, one-note flavor, but may i add that the slimy texture leaves much to be desired. Hot and Sour soup is the polar opposite. It is a textural pleasure and my first taste of it was a dare from my food-adventurer dad so that adds a warm memory to the warm soup. I usually use the fried won ton strips rather than the crispy noodles. Dad put a smidge of duck sauce in his, I usually go for a dab of light soy sauce and a spoonful of freshly chopped chives. YUM!

    Like

  11. May 11, 2012 at 12:16 pm #

    Oh, yes. I actually measure a Chinese restaurant by its hot and sour soup. There is a restaurant called Fareast here that cooks H&S soup to order and it’s like none other. Then there is a Chinese buffet here called Panda Buffet (and they’re always out of panda by the way!) that’s H&S soup actually smells like wet dog fur. I know it falls into a horrible stereotype, and I really don’t believe there is dog by product in the soup or anywhere else in the restuarant, but I don’t go there because I can’t get the soup.

    Don’t know why I’ve never made tried to make my own before, though. Thanks!

    Like

  12. May 11, 2012 at 12:52 pm #

    I never used to like mushrooms..now those are one of my favourite kinds!

    Like

  13. May 11, 2012 at 1:17 pm #

    I do love hot and sour soup. This looks great.

    Like

  14. Tanya Cain
    May 11, 2012 at 4:40 pm #

    Sounds tasty & simple to prepare. Also I am very pleased to see that your recipe includes low sodium ingredients.

    Like

  15. May 11, 2012 at 4:48 pm #

    I’m so glad that you commented on my blog a few weeks ago. I really enjoy yours. Looking forward to trying to make this soup. I’ve never bought tofu. Never thought I would either. Gonna have to change that soon. I love hot and sour soup.

    Like

  16. May 11, 2012 at 7:09 pm #

    Hot sour soup is great, the fungus is the best part!

    Like

  17. May 11, 2012 at 8:13 pm #

    mmm, I love Hot and Sour soup. This looks like an easy and tasty recipe!

    Like

  18. May 12, 2012 at 6:19 am #

    Never touched the soup until I worked in Chinatown; there I got the lesson of what was really in it. I, too, judge a Chinese restaurant by its hot and sour soup. Never thought of making it at home; thanks for the recipe.

    Like

  19. May 12, 2012 at 6:21 am #

    Thanks for the ‘like’ on my website the other day–Thought I’d come over to see what this site is all about…now I want to eat everything! haha Great blog–I’ll be checking back for some of these recipes!

    Like

  20. Xenoia
    May 12, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    At a Chinese I almost always skip the soup. Not because it is bad but because I love the appetisers so much!

    You should try Thai Hot and Sour soup, or Thom Yam/Thom Ka. They do require a bit more effort in getting the ingredients together so you probably would have to visit an Asian store. But all three are very tasty and worth the effort! 🙂

    Like

  21. May 12, 2012 at 9:49 am #

    I’m going to have whip myself up a batch of this soup and try out the eel, erm mushrooms. Looks delish!

    Like

  22. May 12, 2012 at 10:13 am #

    Oh I love this soup! And I really love Chinese mushrooms as well. This is excellent. I normally use Chinese mushrooms when I make our traditional Humba (pork stew) since they go very well together! But never tried it in a soup. Thank you for this Ranting Chef! 🙂

    Like

  23. May 12, 2012 at 5:31 pm #

    Love this and it would be perfect with my Thai menu tonight. Bring some over?

    Like

  24. May 12, 2012 at 7:10 pm #

    Love the title! 🙂

    Like

  25. Karla
    May 12, 2012 at 11:42 pm #

    So, what’s in the soup? 🙂

    Like

  26. Filipovsky
    May 14, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

    Thanks to you I just found the inspiration for dinner today 🙂

    Like

  27. May 15, 2012 at 2:55 am #

    I love hot and sour soup! My husband doesn’t like spicy things so much, but here’s to hoping he’ll like it as well.

    Like

  28. May 17, 2012 at 3:44 pm #

    This looks great! We used to have a favorite Sczechuan place that had killer hot and sour soup, but it’s gone now. Maybe it’s time I made my own too. Thanks! 🙂

    Like

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Prawn dish on lazy day… « - May 13, 2012

    […] here’s another dish that I can’t wait to try with Chinese mushrooms, from the amazing Ranting Chef. Share […]

    Like

  2. Scallion Pancakes « Clover and Thyme - June 27, 2012

    […] served these for dinner tonight with this recipe for hot and sour soup from the Ranting Chef’s blog! Share this:TwitterFacebookPinterestLike […]

    Like

  3. Fallen Out of the Rotation | Rantings of an Amateur Chef - April 10, 2013

    […] Peanut Noodles with Chicken, Grilled Mustard-Glazed Pork, Grilled Venison Tenderloin, Hot and Sour Soup, Mushroom Green Ginger Soup, Orange Soy Pork Loin, Panda express orange chicken, Pasta […]

    Like

  4. Searching for the Ranting Chef | Rantings of an Amateur Chef - February 21, 2014

    […] I love this and the variations on this. I wrote a post about where I thought there was eel in hot and sour soup. I get hits almost every day on […]

    Like

  5. 25 Things Chefs Never Tell You | Rantings of an Amateur Chef - September 18, 2015

    […] of the most visited recipes here is for Hot and Sour Soup. It is in a post I titled “Don’t Ask What’s In The Soup“. Like the soup, there are many times when it is best to just not […]

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: