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Hot and Sour Soup

Truly one of our family favorites. Stacy always asked for this whenever she comes home. In fact she got tired of asking so she learned to fix it herself. Because it’s so popular we usually double the recipe so everyone can really pig out.

cup dried wood ears (optional)
cip dried shiitake mushrooms
1 cup sliced, fresh mushrooms (or whole straw mushrooms)
6 cups chicken stock - one 49oz can is just right
cup drained, canned bamboo shoots, rinsed and julenned
2 teaspoons minced ginger
teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with equal parts water
1 large egg
1 egg white
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons thin (regular) soy sauce plus a pinch of sugar
1 tablespoon thick soy sauce
4 ounces firm tofu, cut into 1/3 inch dice (use more if you wish)
teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper (use more for additional heat)
finely diced scallions

In separate bowls, cover the wood ears and dried mushrooms with hot water. Let soak about 30 minutes until softened. Drain and thoroughly rinse. Trim the rough ends from the buds and, if using shiitakes, coarsely chop them.

In a large saucepan combine the chicken stock, wood ears, all of the mushrooms, bamboo shoots, ginger and salt. Cover and bring to a boil over moderately high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the vinegar and  red pepper and boil over moderately high heat for 2 minutes.

Beat the cornstarch mixture into the soup in a steady stream. In a bowl, combine the egg and egg white and beat into the soup. Stir in the soy sauces, tofu and sesame oil and cook over moderately high heat until warmed through.  Garnish with scallions.


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