A simplified, easy lowfat hot & sour soup

Homemade hot & sour soup

This is a very simplified version of American restaurant style hot & sour soup. If made with vegetable stock and egg substitute, it’s vegetarian. You can spice this to your liking, this recipe as is will not be very hot nor very spicy.  

6 cups of a good low sodium chicken stock or broth
1 cup of mushrooms, white, portobello or even canned
1 cup of bamboo shoots, cut into strips
1/2 cup sliced water chestnuts
1 cup of tofu, cubed (I like the firm style) (NOT frozen first)

2 eggs or equivalent Eggbeaters or vegan egg substitute

1 tablespoon of dark soy sauce for color
1 tablespoon of regular soy sauce for flavor
1 tablespoon of hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon of chili oil (or chili garlic paste)

½ cup cornstarch slurry (water mixed with 2 TBSP cornstarch)
Few shakes of black or white pepper to taste

1 tablespoon of white vinegar (added AFTER heat is off)
1 tablespoon of rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar (added AFTER heat is off)
1 teaspoon sesame oil (added AFTER heat is off)

1)  Put chicken stock in a pot. Bring stock to boil over high heat. Add mushrooms, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, chili oil/ paste, soy sauce, hoisin sauce and pepper. Reduce fire to low heat, and simmer for 20 min.

2)  Stir in cornstarch slurry until consistency is slightly thickened.

3)  Break eggs in a bowl, briefly beat with serving fork then swirl eggs into the soup on medium heat. THE EGG DROP TECHNIQUE: With one hand you’ll keep the soup swirling in a circle, with the other you’ll slowly drizzle the egg mixture in and you’ll see it begin to form egg-drop ribbons. Stir constantly until the ribbons form.

4)  Add tofu and turn heat off. Stir in vinegars and sesame oil AFTER heat is off. Serve hot.

If not sour enough, add more vinegar or lemon juice.
If it’s too sour, add a little sugar.
If it’s not spicy enough, add more chili garlic sauce, a 1/4 tsp at a time.
To make it taste richer, add a little more sesame oil.
To make it saltier, add a little more regular soy sauce.

SECRET: Did you know egg drop soup is easily made simply by drizzling beaten egg into a simmering broth and topping with a little sesame oil when serving?

RELATED: A simplified, easy lowfat hot & sour soup
More Hot and Sour Soups 

Here’s an easy copycat recipe for P.F. Chang’s hot and sour soup, I’ve never tried it because a cup of soy sauce to a quart of chicken stock seems overwhelming   http://chinese.food.com/recipe/p-f-changs-hot-and-sour-soup-356263

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