Hot and Sour Soup is a regional cuisine of Beijing and Sichuan known for its complex taste with both spicy hot and sour. This soup is usually considered a healthy option at most Chinese establishments made with tofu, wooden ear fungus (木耳) and bamboo shoot, seasoned with spice vinegar and chili oil. There is a vegetarian version with soft and firm tofu but also a meat version with pork or chicken. Recently some high end Chinese restaurants are using seafood like prawns and scallops so they can demand a premium price.
For six people
- Use one tablespoon of spice vinegar mix with half a tablespoon of white rice vinegar per bowl of soup as measurement yardstick.
- You can use chili oil and mix with hot bean sauce to make it spicy.
- Use cornstarch as thickening agent.
Lean pork 1/4 lb (Julienne)
(Marinade pork with pinch of salt, sugar, light soy sauce plus 1/4 teaspoon of cornstarch mix with two teaspoons of water for 1/2 hour)
Fresh shiitake mushroom 4x (Julienne)
semi-firm tofu 1/3 piece (Julienne)
Wooden ear fungus (木耳) 4 pieces (re-hydrate and Julienne)
Bamboo shoot 1/4 cup (Julienne)
Egg 1 (beat)
Chicken stock 6 cups (unsalted)
Cornstarch 2 tablespoons mix with 1/8 cup of water
Kosher salt 1/2 teaspoon
Sugar 1/2 teaspoon
Dark soy sauce 2 tablespoons
Light soy sauce 2 tablespoons
White pepper 1/4 teaspoon
Spice vinegar 6 tablespoons
White rice vinegar 3 tablespoons
Chill oil 3 tablespoons
Hot bean sauce 1 tablespoon
Cilantro few pieces
Green onion 1 stock (cut to small pieces)
Place the above ingredients in a serving bowl and set aside.
Heat up a deep pan and pour two tablespoons of oil. Place pork in pan and spread it out it can cook evenly for about two minutes. Flip over to other side and let it cook for another two minutes before pouring the chicken stock to the pan.
Once the stock is boiling, place mushroom, and fungus in it, let it boil for one minute before putting bamboo shoot and tofu in soup. Add dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, salt, sugar and white pepper, Mix the cornstarch water well and slowly mix it in the soup till thicken. Turn off heat once you see the soup is thick enough and start boiling again. Gently add one egg on top of soup and stir slowly.
Pour the soup to the serving soup bowl with the vinegar mixture. Serve soup while it is hot!