Restaurant Style Hot and Sour Soup
I’m always amazed how food can elicit so many memories when we see it, smell it, and taste it. One such food that brings so many memories flooding back for me is this Chinese Hot and Sour Soup. It was a hot August day and I had been in the hospital for nearly 18 days and my world, my very existence, had been thrust into the greatest storm I had yet to experience in my 21 years of life. In June of 2011, only 5 months after marrying my Prince Charming, the beautiful fairy tale life we were living came crashing down around us with the words the doctor whispered to me with tears in his eyes, “You have cancer.”
I never dreamed that three small words could wreak so much havoc. It was like having a death sentence declared over me, and I was so young! “Why cancer?” “Why me?” “Why now?” These were questions that would haunt me for years to come. Fast forward two months from that fateful day and many biopsies, hospital visits, tests, and one surgery later, and I’m sitting in a hospital room experiencing my first Chemotherapy treatment and just wondering if I’m even going to live to see the next day.
Quick and Easy Hot and Sour Soup Cures All
My sweet husband who was working nights and trying to visit me by day had came up to the hospital to see if there was any food he could bring me to eat. I was violently sick with the chemotherapy treatments and in an incredible amount of pain from the tests and biopsies along with the surgery they had performed, all in such a short amount of time. Since I was having a difficult time eating and holding food down, my husband thought maybe he could convince me to eat if he offered one of my favorite cuisines – Chinese Food. One thing I have always loved from a local Chinese restaurant is their Chinese Hot and Sour Soup so my husband brought me a steaming take-out bowl of that along with crunchy won-ton strips and egg rolls. After eating hospital food for nearly 18 days, that bowl of Chinese Hot and Sour Soup tasted like it came straight from the kitchens of heaven; miraculously, I was able to eat it and hold it all down. It was wonderful.
Authentic Hot and Sour Soup pairs perfectly with Orange Chicken and Egg Rolls
I still visit that restaurant occasionally now that I’m cancer free and recovered from everything I went through and I always order their Chinese Hot and Sour Soup with Orange Chicken. I’ve got a great recipe for Orange Chicken HERE) and egg rolls (my version of their egg rolls are HERE. Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is one of the few foods I ate during chemotherapy that I can still eat and enjoy today. Every time I eat a bowl of this soup, I thank God that He spared my life and gave me many more years to live and enjoy life. Since this Hot and Sour Soup has become one of my favorites, I had to try and re-create this recipe at home. While my soup isn’t exactly like theirs, it’s close enough to satisfy my craving for it. Let’s jump right into making this Chinese Hot and Sour Soup by pouring 7 3/4 cups of Organic Beef Bone Broth into a large stock pot, pan, or Dutch Oven. Set the remaining 1/4 cup of bone broth aside because you’ll need it a little later.
How to make Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
Now add in 1/4 cup of Rice Vinegar to your beef bone broth; this is the “sour” part of this Chinese Hot and Sour Soup. It took me a few minutes to find rice vinegar at my local grocery store since it wasn’t on the same aisle with all of the other vinegar. Be sure to check your grocery store’s Asian food aisle because that’s where I found it at my grocery store.
Where to find the ingredients you need for Homemade Hot and Sour Soup
Once your rice vinegar is added to your beef bone broth, add in 1/4 cup of Liquid Aminos. If you’re shopping at a health food store or organic grocery store this will be down by all of the soy sauce and coconut aminos, however, if you’re looking for it at your local grocery store I have found they usually put it with the wine vinegars. In the event that you don’t want to use Liquid Aminos, you can always use soy sauce, coconut aminos, or fish sauce.
Fresh Ingredients in Authentic Chinese Soup
Now that your beef bone broth, liquid aminos, and rice vinegar are combined, add in 2 teaspoons of ground ginger. If you have any fresh ginger root on hand you can grate two teaspoon worth of the fresh ginger root and then squeeze the liquid of it into the soup for a stronger, more potent ginger flavor.
What makes Hot & Sour Soup hot?
After adding the ground ginger, I used 1 teaspoon of Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce for the “hot” component of this Chinese Hot and Sour Soup. In case you want your soup to have extra spice, just double the amount of Sriracha you add to your soup.
How to get the best flavor from your Chinese Soup Bone Broth
Whisk all of the ingredients in your pan together and turn the heat on medium high so that your broth will start to warm and simmer. Simmering the broth before adding any more ingredients gives this delicious broth such a wonderful flavor!
Adding mushrooms to your Easy Chinese Soup
While you’re waiting for the broth to get hot and simmer, rinse 10 ounces of sliced baby Portabella mushrooms and add them into the broth. If you don’t like mushrooms you can replace them with bamboo shoots or just skip them all together.
The secret to Authentic Restaurant Style Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
Once the mushrooms have been stirred into your Chinese Hot and Sour Soup, add in 1/4 cup of Stir Fry Sauce and stir it well. The Stir Fry Sauce is my own little “secret ingredient” for this recipe and lends this Hot and Sour Soup that authentic, restaurant flavor.
How to kick up the spiciness to Homemade Restaurant Hot and Sour Soup
I like to spice my Hot and Sour Soup up with about 2 dashes of ground white pepper. If you’re new to using ground white pepper, it is very spicy and gives Asian food that authentic Asian spiciness that we all know and love – unless you like things really spicy, I suggest you go easy on this one!
How to quickly thicken soup
Grab that 1/4 cup of Beef Bone Broth that you set aside earlier and add in 1/4 cup of corn starch. Whisk the corn starch and beef bone broth together until completely smooth.
How to thicken your soup with cornstarch
Pour the bone broth/corn starch mixture into your soup, and begin to stir the soup. At this point your Hot and Sour Soup should be hot and gently bubbling.
Continue to stir in the bone broth/corn starch mixture until it is well blended with your soup and the Chinese Hot and Sour Soup begins to thicken.
How to make your Chinese Soup taste authentic
Once the soup has reached the desired consistency, add in 1 teaspoon of sesame oil. Sesame oil is just another ingredient (like the Stir Fry Sauce) that helps to lend a more authentic flavor to your soup.
How to create egg ribbons in your Asian Soup
Stir the sesame oil into the Hot and Sour Soup, then crack 3 eggs into a small bowl and whisk them until fully beaten and blended. Begin to stir the hot and sour soup in a circular motion and pour the beaten eggs into the soup in a thin, steady stream.
Continue stirring the soup while you drizzle the beaten eggs in to form the lovely egg ribbons that makes this soup so hearty and delicious.
An easy way to cook tofu in Chinese Soup
Now that the eggs have been added, grab a block of Organic Extra Firm Tofu and cut the tofu into bite sized pieces. Add the bite sized pieces of tofu to the Hot and Sour Soup and give the soup another gentle stir.
Adding green onions to your Chinese Egg Drop Hot and Sour Soup
Last but not least, select 4 green onions and rinse them under cool water to remove any dirt. Remove the white, bulb end of the onions, just leaving the green stalk. Chop the green onion into small pieces, then stir it into the Chinese Hot and Sour Soup.
Homemade Take Out Restaurant Style Hot and Sour Soup; ready to serve!
Your soup is hot and merrily bubbling on the stove; time to grab a bowl and enjoy the fruits of your labor! One thing I love so much about this Hot and Sour Soup is how fast and easy it is to make – just a few minutes and you have a wonderful, comforting, meal on the table!
Side items that pair perfectly with Soup
I like to serve our Chinese Hot and Sour Soup with won-ton strips on top and egg rolls on the side along with a simple, iceberg lettuce salad with a ginger vinaigrette salad dressing.
Fake Out Take Out Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
Thank you for stepping into my kitchen today and listening to my memories and watching me cook. It’s always a joy to have you all come by and visit me and I hope you will return again soon! If you love Chinese food as much as we do, check out my recipe for Egg Roll in a Bowl and Meatless Egg Rolls as well as Paleo Orange Chicken. September is National Lymphoma Awareness Month, (which is the type of cancer I had) so as the month approaches, I plan to share more of my story as a cancer survivor. I hope that in sharing my story I can somehow encourage someone and continue the healing process myself. After all, healing isn’t all physical – sometimes our minds seek closure and comfort after experiencing something so life altering. Blessings and happiness to you!
Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
A hearty and delicious, restaurant style Chinese Hot & Sour Soup, comforting and perfect for cool autumn evenings.
- 8 cups Beef Bone Broth
- 8 oz Organic Extra Firm Tofu cut into bite sized cubes
- 10 oz sliced baby Portabella mushrooms rinsed
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup Stir Fry Sauce
- 1/4 cup Liquid Aminos
- 3 eggs beaten
- 2 tsp Organic ground ginger
- 1 tsp Sriracha Sauce
- 1 tsp Organic Maple Syrup
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 4 green onions thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- ground white pepper to taste
Set aside 1/4 cup of the Beef Bone Broth for later use.
Add the remaining Beef Bone Broth to a Dutch oven or large pan along with the mushrooms, rice vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, chili garlic sauce, Stir Fry sauce, and maple syrup and stir to combine.
Heat over medium high heat until the soup begins to simmer.
While the soup is heating, whisk together the 1/4 cup of bone broth and the cornstarch until completely smooth. Once the soup has reached a simmer, stir in the cornstarch mixture and stir until the soup has thickened.
Continue stirring the soup in a circular motion, then drizzle the beaten eggs in slowly, in a thin stream, all while continuing to stir the soup.
Cut the tofu into bite sized cubes and add it into the soup, along with the seasame oil and the green onions thinly sliced. Remove and discard the white, bulb end of the onion and only use the green portion.
Season the soup lightly with the ground white pepper, stir to combine, and then serve immediately, or turn the heat to simmer and allow to simmer for a couple hours to allow for a more vibrant flavor.
Serve hot with crunchy wonton strips and egg rolls and enjoy!
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