This is an incredibly nourishing soup when made using the proper techniques and ingredients.
[One caveat: Soybeans are a SOMETIMES food. We avoid them almost entirely, in any form (soy milk, soy “meat”, tofu, etc… Although, I haven’t ever tried Tempeh, which is fermented soybeans and would be okay also as a sometimes food.) This soup is our soybean exception. And only because the soybeans are sprouted. All the anti-nutrients in the soybean itself have been removed, but the phyto-estrogen (plant hormones) still remain. Phyto-estrogen can wreak havoc on a body, especially on young children, teens, men, and women in their childbearing and menopausal years. So, basically everyone at all times. Limit soy and make sure it is sprouted or fermented!]
This recipe is my Nana’s creation. She was notorious for doing this. She went home and figured out the ingredients for this recipe after liking it so much at a local Chinese restaurant. (This was before the internet.) She has been gone for a few years now, but I still give all credit to her whenever it is due, which is often. I quadruple this recipe and add a tad more vinegar and a tad less sesame oil. I also omit the cornstarch and I just have a thin brothy soup. Just taste preference and my husbands current food limitations/allergies. It’s a very versatile recipe and a staple in our home.
All of the ingredients should be able to be purchased at your grocery store or local health food store.
Hot ‘N Sour Soup
4 cups homemade chicken stock
1 teaspoon Real Salt
1 Tablespoon naturally fermented soy sauce or Liquid Aminos
1/4 cup pork or chicken, julienned (I use chicken but pork does give a little more flavor because of the added fat)
1/4 cup bamboo shoots, julienned
4 shiitake mushrooms, dried and reconstituted* or fresh
1 square (1 package) sprouted** tofu, firm or extra firm
1/2 teaspoon hot chili paste (Sambal Oelek brand)
2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Arrowroot Powder or Cornstarch
1 beaten egg
2 teaspoons sesame oil
2 sliced green onions
Bring chicken stock, salt, soy sauce, pork/chicken, bamboo shoots and mushrooms to boil. Then reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes.
Drop in Tofu and add chili paste and white vinegar. Bring to boil again.
Stir in arrowroot powder/cornstarch. Stir until soup thickens. Adjust cornstarch to adjust the thickness of the soup. Turn off heat and slowly pour in the beaten egg. Let stand for a few seconds, then stir to break up egg into soup.
Stir in sesame oil and garnish with green onions.
*Reconstitute dried mushrooms in hot water for at least half an hour.
**I found this at our local health food store (Whole Foods) next to the other tofu and soy products.
I am sharing this at Real Food Wednesday.