After trying many recipes, this one comes the closest to the soup served at my favorite Chinese restaurant. Be sure and have all ingredients cut, measured, etc. before you start, because it goes together fairly quickly once you get going.
- 1⁄2 ounce dried wood ear mushrooms
- 1 cup hot water
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 4 ounces lean pork, julienned
- 1 bunch green onion, chopped, white part only
- fresh ground black pepper
- 4 ounces straw mushrooms (fresh should be washed or trimmed or sliced)
- 1 (4 ounce) can sliced mushrooms
- 2 ounces bamboo shoots, cut into matchstick pieces
- 4 ounces bean curd, cut into strips or small pieces
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1⁄4 cup water
- 1⁄4 cup soy sauce (or more to taste)
- 1⁄4 cup rice vinegar (or more to taste)
- 1 egg, beaten
- chopped green onion top, from above bunch
- Tabasco sauce
- Soak wood ear mushrooms in hot water for 30 minutes.
- Drain and julienne the mushrooms after removing tough center/core of each mushroom.
- In a wok, over medium heat, add oil.
- Season pork with salt and pepper.
- When the oil is hot, add the pork and chopped white onions and stir fry for 2 minutes.
- Add all mushrooms, bamboo shoots and bean curd.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Sauté for 2 minutes.
- Add the stock and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
- Dissolve the cornstarch in water.
- Stir the cornstarch mixture into simmering liquid.
- Bring back to a boil and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the soy sauce and rice vinegar.
- In a wide circle, stir in the beaten eggs.
- Stir gently until the eggs are cooked.
- Season the soup with Tabasco sauce to desired hotness.
- Reseason soup with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve in bowls, topping with green onion tops and crispy noodles (fried strips of wonton wrappers) if desired.
- The Tabasco provides the hot, adjust quantity added according to taste.
- More can be added at the table to allow for additional heat as desired!
- The rice vinegar provides the sour;, so add more as needed until desired tartness is achieved.
- The more soy added, the darker the overall color of the broth, but as it is high in sodium, add more in small quantities and taste accordingly, until desired flavor results.
- White pepper can be substituted for the black pepper.
- Although the fresh ground black pepper more strongly flavors the soup overall than the white pepper does.
- Can be made vegetarian by eliminating the pork strips.