Hot & Sour Soup
by Katie Chin, Tastemaker in Residence
As much I love pumpkin, I need an occasional break from the pumpkin options everywhere right now from pumpkin lattes at Starbucks to the pumpkin pancake mix from Trader Joe’s I just made for my kids over the weekend. To me, there’s nothing quite like a bowl of steaming Hot & Sour Soup when autumn hits. This Szechuan classic has just right amount of piquant heat from the chili sauce to balance the sour notes from the vinegar. A lot of my friends didn’t realize how easy it is to make this Chinese restaurant fave and were delighted to find out it only takes a few minutes. I use pork in this recipe for its rich flavor but you can substitute with chicken or just go with tofu if you’d like. Not only is this soup packed with bold flavors, it aids in digestion too!
6 medium black mushrooms
4 oz (100 g) boneless pork loin, cut into thin strips
½ teaspoon all-purpose cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon soy sauce
5 oz (150 g) medium tofu, drained, patted dry and cut into thin strips
4 cups (1 liter) Basic Chicken Stock (page ) or store-bought
3 tablespoons white vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon salt
4 oz (100g) shredded canned bamboo shoots
2 tablespoons all-purpose cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water
¼ teaspoon white pepper
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
2 tablespoons finely chopped green onion (scallion), white and green parts
2 teaspoons Asian chili sauce, such as Sriracha
½ teaspoon dark sesame oil
- In a medium bowl, toss the pork with ½ teaspoon all-purpose cornstarch, ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon soy sauce. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
- Bring the stock, vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1 teaspoon salt to boiling in a medium pot. Add the bamboo shoots, mushrooms, pork and tofu. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, covered.
- Mix 2 tablespoons all-purpose cornstarch, the water and white pepper. Stir into the soup and bring to a rolling boil. Pour the egg slowly into the soup, stirring constantly with a fork until egg forms threads. Add the green onions, chili sauce and sesame oil and stir for 30 seconds. Serve immediately.