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Apr 1, 2012

Hot and Sour Vegetable Soup

This is one of my favorite Chinese soup.  This soup is prepared a million ways depending on the region of China. Made of simple ingredients, this soup does not take a lot of your time, and is great for people suffering from cold. 

To Make a delicious  soup:

1. Always use vegetable stock. Do not use water to make hot and sour soup. You can make a vegetable stock from scratch or buy ready-made ones.
2. Use natural vinegar. Do not use cheap vinegars. Rice vinegar is preferred, especially dark ones. Best to add vinegar it last.
3. Thickening is an art.   Adjust the amount of corn-starch mixture needed.
4. Cut ingredients into similar sizes.

Sambal chili Sauce
My version is heavy on the spicy heat.

Carrots chopped                                 3 tbsp.
Cabbage shredded                              3 tbsp.
Chopped capsicum                              2 tbsp.
Chopped French Beans                        2 tbsp.
Freshly grated ginger                          2 tbsp.
Soft tofu –                                         ¼ cup (optional)
Snow peas (sliced)                             8-10
Fresh red chillies (sliced)                    4 nos.
Home made Vegetable stock              4 cup
 Sesame Oil                                       1 tbsp.
White Black Pepper                            ½ tsp.
Rice Vinegar                                       1 tbsp.
Chili sauce (Samba Chili sauce)           1 tsp.
Corn flour /Corn starch                       2 tbsp.
MSG (Ajinomoto )                               ¼ tsp  (OPTIONAL)
Sugar                                                  1 tsp
Salt                                                     to taste
Fresh coriander leaves                        1 Tbsp.

  • Dissolve corn flour in quarter cup of water and set aside.
  • Heat oil in a wok, add snow peas and green chilies. Sauté for some time.
  • Now add vegetable stock in it. Add chili sauce, soy sauce,  sugar, salt, ginger and pepper powder and bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Now add all vegetables in it and cook for a minute on medium heat. 
  • Now add MSG and  vinegar , bring the mixture to a boil.
  •  Add Dissolved corn starch to the soup stirring constantly till it becomes thick.
  • Cook again for a  minute then remove from flame.
  • Add the cubed tofu  and boil for minute. 
  • Pour the soup into the serving bowl.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander and serve hot.

  •  In this recipe I used  Sambal Oelek (ground chili sauce ),  because this chili sauce  is made of chilies with no other additives such as garlic or spices for a simple taste.

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