Hot and Sour Soup

January 14, 2009 – 7:50 pm

Shaun and I both love hot and sour soup. It’s a hearty yet healthy soup that makes a great meal starter. This recipe is an amalgamation of several that I’ve tried over the years, and this version was just about perfect. I didn’t marinate the tofu, but I’ve added that step below, as we found it a bit lacking. The flavor is just slightly off of perfection, so I think next time I might add another tablespoon of vinegar, but I’m not sure. Just a little more tweaking and I’ll have it!

There are a couple specialty ingredients that I use. The black vinegar is a unique flavor, and it can be found in most Asian grocery stores, but if you can’t find it, substitute a tablespoon of red wine vinegar and a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar. The dried black fungus can also be found in Asian grocery stores, but feel free to substitute about 4 oz of chopped shiitake or crimini mushrooms if you can’t find it.

I’m submitting this (along with my hom bao) to Joelen’s Chinese New Year Wine and Dine blog event.

Hot and Sour Soup
Makes 8 cups – 8 appetizer servings, 4 hearty starter servings, or 2 main course servings

7 oz extra-firm tofu, drained
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 tbsp soy sauce, divided
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
3 tbsp cornstarch, plus 1 tsp (divided)
3 tbsp cold water
1 large egg
1 cup bamboo shoots (1 8-oz can), cut into matchsticks
1 oz dried black fungus
5 tablespoons black Chinese vinegar
2 teaspoons chili oil
1 tsp ground white pepper

Press water out of the tofu by placing the block in a rimmed dish, placing a plate on top of it, and placing a couple heavy cans on top of the plate. Let it sit for 10 minutes. About ½ a cup of water will come out. Cut the tofu into small pieces about half an inch square by a quarter of an inch thick. Put the tofu into a small zip top bag and pour in 1 tbsp of soy sauce and the 1 tsp of sesame oil. Seal the bag and toss to combine. Let sit for 10 minutes.

As the tofu is marinating, pour the chicken broth into a large saucepan and heat over medium high heat. While it heats, mix the 3 tbsp of cornstarch with the water in a small bowl to make a slurry and set aside. Cut the bamboo into matchsticks, and beat the egg with a splash of water and the 1 tsp of cornstarch.

When the broth reaches a boil, add the bamboo and dried black fungus to the pot and reduce the heat to medium low. Let simmer for about 5 minutes or until the black fungus is re-hydrated and tender. Add the marinated tofu and let simmer for another 2 minutes. Stir the cornstarch slurry to recombine, and add it to the pot. Increase the heat to medium high and bring the broth back to a gentle boil. Stir in the vinegar, the remaining 3 tbsp of soy sauce, the chili oil, and the white pepper. Let cook for 1 minute, then take off the heat. Drizzle the egg into the hot broth with a spoon in long thin strands. Return the soup to the heat and bring back to a gentle boil one last time. Remove from the heat and serve immediately.

Nutritional Information Per 1 Cup of Soup

Calories 93
Fat 4 g
Saturated Fat 1 g
Cholesterol 27 mg
Sodium 900 mg
Carbohydrates 10 g
Fiber 1 g
Protein 7 g
Vitamin A 1%
Vitamin C 1%
Calcium 5%
Iron 5%

  1. One Response to “Hot and Sour Soup”

  2. This looks delicious! We love hot & sour soup and the spicier the better! Hopefully you’ll consider submitting this to the Wine & Dine event I’m hosting. I’d love to feature this recipe and your blog in the upcoming round up and help drive traffic to your blog too! Details are in my blog’s left sidebar 🙂

    By Joelen on Jan 14, 2009

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