Home Made Hot and Sour Soup

I must admit something before I start this post. This was my wife’s idea. I was not a big fan of this type of recipe but after much cajoling she got me to at least try it. As soon as I tried it I was hooked. I am usually a meat (preferably slow cooked in smoky goodness) and potatoes (with lots of hot sauce or burn your face off pepper flakes) kind of guy. It only took one attempt at this dish for me to realize it had everything I liked, yes even the tofu (who would have guessed). It has heat, it has flavors galore, and most of all it is simple. So if you were like me… someone who said they would never try tofu, or someone who knows how good tofu can be when cooked properly, I encourage you to give this a try. I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did, I am sure I will never hear the end of it from my lovely wife.
You will need:

One ounce (or more if you prefer, I know I did) of your favorite mushroom, sliced

2 tbs vegetable oil

1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

1 or 2 of your favorite hot peppers, finely chopped

2/3 cup of canned bamboo shoots, sliced

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup rice vinegar

1 tsp salt

1 tsp freshly ground pepper

1 pinch of sugar

2 quarts of chicken stock

1 square firm tofu, drained and sliced into 1/4 inch strips

3 tbs cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup of water

2 eggs, lightly beaten

Optional 1/4 lb of barbecued pork (had to slip it in somewhere)

Directions:

Heat oil in a pot, or wok over medium high flame. Add the ginger, diced hot pepper, sliced mushrooms, bamboo shoots, and shredded pork if you decide to use it. Cook while stirring for one to two minutes. Combine the soy sauce, vinegar, salt, pepper, and sugar in a small bowl. Pour it into your wok or pot whichever you may be using, tossing everything together. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil, simmer for 10 minutes, add tofu and simmer for 3 to 4 more minutes.

Dissolve the corn starch into the water and shake until smooth I will use a mason jar or an old jelly jar for this. Pour the slurry into the soup and boil until the soup thickens a little bit. Remove the soup from the heat and stir the pot until the water is all moving in one direction. In a slow steady stream, pour the egg into the soup. Let the soup rest for 2 or 3 minutes and serve.

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