Chinese Hot-and-Sour Soup
This classic spicy Chinese soup relies on ginger and cayenne for its bite.
- Servings: 8
Source: Martha Stewart Living, June 1998
- 8 cups Homemade Chicken Stock, or canned low-sodium chicken broth, skimmed of fat
- 1 ten-ounce whole boneless and skinless chicken breast
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small onion, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
- 4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 2 carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
- 1 1/2 teaspoons grated ginger
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch cayenne, pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 6 tablespoons rice-wine vinegar
- 1 large whole egg, plus 1 large egg white, beaten
- 3 large scallions, trimmed and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
- 6 ounces firm or extra-firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
In a small saucepan, bring 3 cups chicken stock to a boil. Add chicken breast; poach until cooked through, about 12 minutes. Transfer chicken to a cutting board; slice in half crosswise, then into 1/4-inch-thick strips. Set aside. Pass stock through a cheesecloth-lined sieve set over a medium bowl; set aside.
In a 6-quart saucepan, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add garlic and onion, and cover. Saute, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 6 to 7 minutes. Add mushrooms, and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Add reserved and remaining chicken stock, carrots, ginger, black pepper, cayenne, and salt; bring liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer until carrots are tender, about 3 minutes.
Place cornstarch in a small bowl, and slowly whisk in soy sauce until cornstarch has dissolved. Whisk in vinegar. Slowly whisk cornstarch mixture into soup. Simmer until soup is clear, 5 to 7 minutes. Add reserved chicken, and continue simmering until chicken is heated through, about 2 minutes. Turn off the heat.
Slowly pour beaten eggs through a perforated spoon into soup. Cover and let stand 1 minute. Remove the cover, and gently stir. Add scallions and tofu. Ladle into individual bowls.