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Hot and Sour Soup

Hot and Sour Soup

hot and sour soup

Hot and sour soup is a very common dish in both Taiwan and China. People usually have fried or plain dumplings with hot and sour soup. The sourness of this soup is very good for one’s appetite and my mother use to tell me when I got flu that it will go away quicker if I drink a lot of this soup when I was young.

I don’t know if it’s true or not but I think drinking a lot of hot fluid is good for your body when you catch the flu, right? But please go to doctor if you catch flu or don’t feel well.

The Eastern way to cook soup and western way to cook soup are so different. Most of the western ways to cook this soup are to puree the soup to make it really smooth and soft but in eastern people usually like chunks of meat, fish and vegetables in their soup that they actually can see it. I have to cook a few different kinds of “western soup” when I work and it’s a precious experience for me because I can learn western cooking during work and learn eastern cooking from my family or learn it by myself in my personal time. It’s always fun to learn new things, don’t you think?

Credit: These photos were taken by Chris at Chris Radley Photography

 

Hot and Sour Soup

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 2 people

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 1 ltr chicken stock
  • 80 g pork loin
  • 10 wood ears soak in warm water for 15 minutes to soften then julienne
  • 1 medium carrot julienne it
  • 300 g fresh tofu drain the water and cut into 5cm strips
  • 2 eggs beaten

Marinade for pork

  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp potato starch
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp rice wine

Seasonings

  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1.5 tbsp dark rice vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp normal rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp potato starch

Instructions

  1. Marinade the pork for 15 minutes.
  2. Boil a pot of water to blanch pork, carrot, wood ear and tofu then leave it on aside.
  3. Boiled the chicken stock and add all the ingredients from step 2 to bring it to boil again.
  4. Add soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, salt into the soup, then mix the potato starch with a little bit water first (Remember the potato starch with water must be mix evenly and without any lumps) and add into the soup to make it look a bit dense and sticky.
  5. Turn the gas power to lowest heat and pour the egg into the soup. Stir the soup gently after 30 second and turn off the gas.

 

Drunken Chicken

Drunken Chicken

drunken chicken recipe

When I was a child I always thought you prepared drunken chicken by feeding the chicken a bottle of rice wine before cooking. I thought if the chicken was drunk enough it would make the meat taste of alcohol. Now I think how silly I was but who knows these things.

I love the taste of drunken chicken even if I’m not a big fan of food that tastes of alcohol. This drunken chicken uses Shaoxing rice for which people who have tasted it know it has a strong but special flavour. Some so called celebrity Eastern chefs use Shaoxing rice wine in many dishes but this really isn’t the way to use it.

This drunken chicken is best served as a cold dish making it a great summer dish. It’s refreshing, tasty but not too strong. I hope you enjoy making this dish.

These photos were taken by Chris from: Chris Radley Photography

drunken chicken procedure

 

Drunken Chicken

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 7 hours 30 minutes
Servings 2 people

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken legs including thigh, de-boned
  • 2 spring onions cut into 3cm lengthways
  • 2 thin slices ginger
  • 1 tbsp goji berries
  • 1 thin slice Chinese angelica root
  • 2 thin slices liquorice root

Seasonings

  • 200 ml Shaoxing rice wine
  • 1 cup stock I used chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Couples pinches sugar

Instructions

  1. Use some salt to marinade the chicken legs for 20 minutes and use a few sheets of cling film to wrap the chicken as displayed in the procedure photos below.
  2. Use a small sauce pan to boil the water, stock, spring onion, ginger, goji berries, angelica root, liquorice roots, salt and sugar. After boiling reduce to lowest heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Leave it aside to cool down.
  3. Add Shaoxing rice wine into step 2.
  4. Steam chicken for around 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked.
  5. Remove chicken from sling film and soak in marinade for at lest 6 hours. Leave in a fridge overnight.

 

Beef Shank with Spring Onion Pancake Wrap

Beef Shank with Spring Onion Pancake Wrap

Beef Shank with Spring Onion Pancake Wrap

Beef Shank with spring onion pancake wrap originates from Northern China. Northern Chinese cuisine uses flour as an ingredient very often while Southern Chinese cuisine uses rice as an ingredient very often.

The weather in Northern China, with it’s extreme climate changes from very hot to very cold is far from ideal for growing rice so they grow wheat which is more suitable for the weather in north China. South China’s weather is humid and warm. It’s the best weather for grow the rice so we can usually find a lot of rice dish from south China, for example: rice cake, rice ball.

Most of the Beijing cuisine restaurants in Taiwan definitely sell this beef shank wrap. I love to have a bowl of soup or cup of pearl milk tea with this wrap for my dinner or lunch when I lived in Taipei. This is yet another sublime dish which is very hard to say not to. When I lived in Taipei I found it difficult to control my weight but now I live in Edinburgh if I want to eat some real, traditional food from China I have to call my mother and grandma to ask them how to make it. It makes me laugh when my mother tells me her cooking skills have improved after she has read my recipes on my blog.

Here is the recipe for this yummy beef shank with spring onion pancake wrap and I hope you will enjoy it.

Credit: These photos were taken by Chris at Chris Radley Photography

how to make Beef Shank with Spring Onion Pancake Wrap

 

Beef Shank with Spring Onion Pancake Wrap

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

Ingredients for stewed beef shank

  • 800 g beef shanke
  • 2 spring onions cut 3cm lengthways
  • 4 thin slices ginger
  • 2 shallots peeled and chopped roughly
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 dried chili or you can use fresh chili

Seasonings for stewed beef shank

  • 1 Chinese spice bag (available in Chinese supermarket) or use 2 star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice wine
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp spicy bean paste

Ingredient for spring onion pancake

  • 350 g bread flour
  • 250 g plain flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp sugar
  • 400 ml warm water
  • 6 spring onions chopped finely
  • Handful white sesame
  • 60 g lard

Instructions

Procedures for stewed beef shank

  1. Cook the beef shank in boiling water for a couple minutes and rinse under cold water. Leave it to one side.
  2. Stir fry spring onion, ginger, garlic, shallot, chilli until you can smell the fragrance and add spicy bean paste to stir fry for another 30 seconds.
  3. Place step 1 and 2 into a stock pot and add all the seasonings. Pour the water into the stockpot to cover the shank and use full gas power to boil the shank. After it’s boiling turn the gas power to the lowest and leave to simmer for 2 at least.

Procedures for spring onion pancake

  1. Mix flour, salt, sugar with warm water together and knead it until it’s nice, soft and smooth.
  2. Cover the dough with a clean, wet tea towel and leave it on aside for 20~30 minutes.
  3. Separate the dough into 10 small dough balls and flatten them individual.
  4. Brush Lard on the flatten pancake first and sprinkle spring onion, sesame, a couple pinch of salt.
  5. Roll the dough as the way in the procedures photos.
  6. Just use a little bit of oil to pan fry the pancake until both side are golden brown, crispy.

Recipe Notes

* Slice the beef shank into really thin slice and wrap them with spring onion pancake, Hoi sin sauce, spring onion or any salad, vegetable you like.

 

Pearl Meatballs

Pearl Meatballs

pearl meatballs recipe

Because of the layer of glutinous rice that surrounds this meatball we give it the great name of “Pearl Meatball”. This is because the rice looks translucent and the colour and shape of this meatballs looks like a pearl.

This dish can often to be seen in banquets and parties in both Taiwan and China because people love the name, the taste and also the pretty shape of it.

I loved this dish when I was younger and I remember my grandfather found out I love this dish and he just keep cooking this pearl meat ball dish pretty much everyday. So one day, I got really tired of this dish and I have to tell my grandfather to cook a new dish in a very sweet and none hurt his feelings way. I know what he did is for love but some time even though a dish is so tasty you still have to take break from it some time or you will just feel tired of it.

There are so many dishes that my grandfather cooked for me when I was young and now I share with you all these recipe and I hope you will enjoy it just like me and cook those dishes for your love one.

Credit: These photos were taken by Chris at Chris Radley Photography

 

Pearl Meatballs

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 12 meatballs

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 200 g beef mince
  • 120 g pork fat or you can use 220g of pork belly without the skin and 100g beef mince
  • 2 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp dried shrimps available in Chinese supermarkets
  • 2 thin slices ginger
  • 1 small carrot
  • 1 1/4 cups glutinous rice soak in water for at least 1 hour

Seasonings

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp potato starch
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Use a food processor to mince the meat together and after the meat has totally blended, add an egg to mix for another 30 second.
  2. Plate all the meat into a mixing bowl and start to beat the meat for few minutes to help the meat get that wonderful elasticity texture. (This step is a great therapy for the daily stressful life, lol).
  3. Soak dried shitake mushrooms and dried shrimp into a bowl of warm water until it’s soft. Chop the shitake mushrooms roughly.
  4. Two thin slices of ginger chopped finely and wash and cut the carrot roughly.
  5. Use a food processor to mince mushrooms, shrimps, ginger and carrot finely and mix them with step 2 evenly.
  6. Add all the seasonings with ingredients together and mix them nicely.
  7. Make the mixture into small but equal size balls and cover the meatball with a layer of glutinous rice.
  8. Use a bamboo steamer or regular steamer to steam the meatballs for 12~15 minutes with full gas power.

 

Salad Boat Sandwich

Salad Boat Sandwich

salad boat sandwich

Salad boat sandwich is one of my favourite snacks in Taiwanese cuisine. It’s also known as “MiaoKou Sandwich” for which MiaoKou is the name of a night market in Keelung, Taiwan. This night market sell a lot of tasty food and it’s always full of tourists. This salad boat sandwich is one of the most famous street food in this night market.

The best part of this sandwich is the bread. The bread is crispy on the outside and soft in the inside. It has a little bit milk flavour and a little bit sweetness but not too strong with fresh cucumber, tomato, stewed eggs and ham plus Taiwanese sweet mayonnaise. Ohh…just one bite of this amazing sandwich can make my day full of sunshine.

Of course if you don’t like cucumber, tomato, ham and then you can change any kind of filling you like. I like my Salad boat with sweet corn tuna mayonnaise or rocket lettuce with roast chicken which is really depends on personal flavour but here I’m only introduce you the most original method that we use in Taiwan and I hope you will enjoy my recipe and have fun to make this sandwich.

Just to give you an idea of what people thought of this sandwich here they said it’s almost like eating a savoury doughnut. The dough is just like that used in a doughnut but the bread is entirely savoury and not sweet, making this sandwich extremely unique.

Credit: These photos were taken by Chris at Chris Radley Photography

salad boat sandwich procedures

 

Salad Boat Sandwich

Course Main Dish
Prep Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 14 bread rolls

Ingredients

Ingredients for Salad Boat Sandwich

  • 350 g bread flour
  • 60 g plain flour
  • 45 g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 15 g milk powder
  • 14 g yeast
  • 180 g water
  • 45 g unsalted butter
  • 1 egg
  • Some Taiwanese style sweet mayonnaise
  • Some thin slices cucumber
  • Few slices ham
  • Some stewed eggs

Ingredients for Taiwanese Style Sweet Mayonnaise

  • 2 whole eggs
  • 10 g salt
  • 90 g caster sugar
  • 60 g potato starch
  • 20 g rice vinegar
  • A little bit of oil

Instructions

Procedures for Salad Boat Sandwich

  1. Add flour, sugar salt, milk powder, egg into a mixing bowl and melt the yeast in the water and add them into the mixing bowl too.
  2. Knead the step 1 for 5 to 10 minutes when it’s turn to a smooth ball and then add the butter to mix evenly.
  3. Cover the dough with cling film and wet tea towel and leave it to arise for 1 hour - 90 minutes.
  4. We separate the dough into a small balls weigh 50g for one after the dough arise to twice bigger than the original size.
  5. Put a rolling pin in the middle of the small ball and flatten it towards the sides.
  6. Use fingers to roll the flattened dough into an olive shape. Wet the dough in the cold water and then coat the dough with breadcrumb then leave it on the side for another 30~40 minutes to allow it to rise again.
  7. Heat up the oil in a wok and deep-fry the bread roll for 3~5 minutes at a lower heat. Throw a small piece of bread into the oil if the temperature is right and the bread will flow on the oil with a lot of bubble immediately. I will cook three bread rolls at once in case the oil temperature drops too quickly.
  8. Use a pair of scissor to cut the bread roll and put a little bit of mayonnaise first then add cucumber, tomato, ham and stewed eggs in it.

Procedures for Taiwanese Sweet Mayonnaise

  1. Add salt, sugar, potato starch and vinegar into a small saucepan and cook it at the lowest gas power. Keep stirring it while cooking and once the mixture begins to turn into a sticky paste turn off the heat.
  2. Whisk the step 1 mixture into the eggs, a little bit at once. (You will see the eggs with the mixture will start turning to a creamy colour). After this, just use the oil to change the thickness to whatever you desire. (This is the reason why I didn’t put down the amount of the oil in my recipe.)