Hot and sour soup is delicious and has become a tradition in my family. Mom would make it when someone had a miserable cold that just wouldn’t go. It was joked that if you ate this soup it would sweat the illness right out of you!
Back in the ’80’s, Mom and Dad would occasionally go for lunch at a small Chinese restaurant, and fell in love with their HOT AND SOUR SOUP. Mom spent some time practicing and perfecting her stronger version of it. One thing you must know about my family is that we absolutely LOVE spicy food, the hotter the better! I ate spicy food during my pregnancies and after and now the kids enjoy food of all descriptions; they do take after my side of the family in this regard.
As the Chinese New Year is so close to Valentine’s Day this year, you may appreciate a meal that isn’t so sweet. We will be attending the borough’s festivities again this year as we enjoyed them so much last year.
This isn’t a difficult soup, it just takes a little time to slice the veggies, but with practice, we all get better at this, or so I keep telling myself!
Get your ingredients for hot and sour soup ready:
Chicken soup base
White onion – cut into thin strips
Carrot – slice it into longish thin strips using your veggie peeler
Bell peppers; red, green, or any variation – cut into strips
Celery – cut finely
Mushrooms – cut thinly
Garlic, crushed/minced to taste
Soya sauce – a good glug, or more to taste
Hot sauce – your favourite brand – as much as you can handle! (Of course you can make a milder version of this soup; it’s your soup, so adjust it to your taste)
Chili – fresh or dried flakes – again, use as much or as little as you’d like
Vinegar – adjust this to your taste to balance out the hot and the sour
Corn starch/corn flour – a tablespoon or two, mixed well with some cold water in a cup so it doesn’t go lumpy
Put the hot and sour soup together
1) Prepare the veggies and add to the soup base.
2) Add the flavourings as desired.
3) Bring to a boil then simmer until cooked. This won’t take long because all the veggies are in thin ribbons.
4) Adjust the hot and the vinegar as desired. Be sure to give the soup a little chance to adjust after adding extra hot or sour and before taste-testing it again.
5) Mix corn starch with cold water and add to the mix to thicken it.
Note: Tofu, shrimp, and other items may be added if desired.
If you like soups, try our Lentil and Carrot soup.
How hot do you like your food?