Crunchy wood ear, soft tofu cubes, silky egg ribbons, tangy vinegar, and an umami-laden chili broth makes the classic hot and sour soup a delicious bowl of bold flavours and textures that are surprisingly easy to throw together.
Courtesy of Karon Liu.
Mix all the ingredients for the pork together (meat, soy sauces, sugar, cornstarch, and ginger) in a bowl. Set aside and let marinate for 5 minutes.
In a slightly oiled pan, sear the marinated pork until it starts to brown, about 1 or 2 minutes. Set aside.
If your wood ear mushrooms are dehydrated, reconstitute them by soaking them for 30 minutes in boiling water. Do this ahead of time, or even the day before. Store the hydrated mushrooms on a plate with a damp paper towel draped on top.
In a medium-sized soup pot, bring the chicken broth to a boil.
When the broth is boiling, add the chili paste and vinegar. Stir until the paste has completely dissolved. Chop the wood ear mushrooms into smaller slices and add them to the pot along with the shimeji mushrooms. Stir and add in the cornstarch to thicken the soup. Bring to a boil and add the tofu and pork. Whisk the egg together and add it to the boiling soup very slowly in a thin stream. Keep the soup to a simmer.
Bring a fresh pot of water to a boil and cook the noodles until they are al dente, about 2-3 minutes. Drain and set aside.
To plate, pour 3/4 of the soup into a large bowl. Pile the cooked Shanghai noodles high on top in the centre, and then ladle the rest of the soup around the noodles. Garnish with green onions and serve immediately. Serves two as an appetizer, or one as a main dish.