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Old 09-13-2006, 06:51 AM   #11
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If you can, try to get hold of Chinese black vinegar and use this to adjust sourness when the soup is about done. This will give you an authentic Chinese taste and color. (Chinese black vinegar is very rich and flavorful, almost like balsamic vinegar but different.)
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Old 09-13-2006, 09:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopstix
If you can, try to get hold of Chinese black vinegar and use this to adjust sourness when the soup is about done. This will give you an authentic Chinese taste and color. (Chinese black vinegar is very rich and flavorful, almost like balsamic vinegar but different.)

Thanks for the tip, I'll try that on the next batch.
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Old 09-13-2006, 10:38 AM   #13
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chili oil here too, for the heat...come on, break a sweat!
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Old 09-13-2006, 10:46 AM   #14
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Chile oil works but I use chile peppers for the heat and use the oil for a last minute adjustment as needed.
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Old 09-13-2006, 11:07 AM   #15
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You definitely need sesame oil in that. Plus it's not "hot" and sour soup, since it doesn't have anything in it to make it hot!

You can kill 2 birds with one stone by using hot chili oil, which is hot sesame oil. Or you can use regular sesame oil and simmer with a few dried chinese bird peppers (recommend taking out before serving) or some red chile flakes.

I'd add some white pepper, too, but that really won't make it hot. It'll give it a more traditional taste.

As will adding a bit of black vinegar (but I wouldn't sub out all the rice vinegar with balck) and tree ear mushrooms.
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Old 09-13-2006, 01:13 PM   #16
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I'd never even heard of black vinegar. I'll keep an eye out for it. Thanks bunches!!!
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Old 09-13-2006, 01:14 PM   #17
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You'll have to go to an Asian market to find it.
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Old 09-13-2006, 01:17 PM   #18
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There is a huge Asian market near Paul's office Andy. I always think about stopping and now I have a reason ( as if sushi we not enough, lol).
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Old 09-13-2006, 01:47 PM   #19
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Andy, thanks for posting Ming Tsai's recipe, I was trying to find it to send to Pds. I have used this too and like it.

Pds, I guess I get a little extreme, I like things HOT! :-)
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Old 09-13-2006, 03:10 PM   #20
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I adapted & have been making the following soup since 1975 when this cookbook by Grace Zia Chu was first published. It's still my favorite, & even though I've tried other versions, I always come back to this one as it contains so many different & authentic ingredients, yet is so easy to make. It also reheats beautifully.


PEKING SOUR AND PEPPERY SOUP
(adapted from Madame Chu’s Chinese Cooking School)

¼ -1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast (one breast piece)
½ cup dried Chinese mushrooms (or dried shitake mushrooms)
12 dried tiger-lily buds
1 tablespoon dried cloud ear mushrooms
1 cake fresh firm or extra-firm bean curd
1 egg
5 cups chicken broth
1 small can shredded bamboo shoots
½ teaspoon sugar
2 tablesoons light (Japanese) soy sauce
2-1/2 tablespoons white vinegar (or to taste)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
2-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch, dissolved in 2 tablespoons of cold water
1 tablespoon sesame oil or hot (aka chili) sesame oil

Cut the chicken into matchstick-sized shreds.
Soak mushrooms, cloud ears, & tiger-lily buds in 1 cup of hot water for 20-30 minutes, changing hot water every 5 minutes or so. Drain & rinse well. Shred the mushrooms & cloud ears; tie each tiger lily bud into a knot.
Cut bean curd into shreds.
Beat the egg until thoroughly & completely mixed.

Heat broth in a large saucepan until boiling. Add chicken strips & mix a few times. Bring back to a low boil & add bean curd, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, cloud ears, & lily buds. Add sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, & black pepper. Boil for 2 minutes & then add –first stirring to recombine – cornstarch/water mixture. Stir & then pour in beaten egg. Turn off heat & stir again, then sprinkle sesame oil on top & taste for seasoning, adding in additional vinegar &/or pepper to taste if necessary. Serve.

Edited to add that if I have some Bok Choy in the house, I'll sometimes shred & add some of the leafy tops to add some "green" color to this soup.
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