Recipe by Amis
The French introduced asparagus to the Vietnamese, who promptly incorporated this classic vegetable into their cuisine. The Vietnamese word for asparagus is "Western bamboo," due to its resemblance to bamboo shoots. This is a nice, light soup that my whole family likes. I can't always get my hands on white asparagus (it's so expensive) but I've use green with no problems. Posted for World Zaar Tour 05.
Top Review by Domestic Princess
I made this last week and LOVED IT! It's the kind of soup you want to try and never dared. But the end result was fantastic. It kept well in the fridge and the fish sauce & pork bone really seeped a lot of flavour into the soup. I used crabstick meat, which worked quite well in the soup. I didn't use the cornstarch as I felt it didn't need thickening, plus I added more ground black pepper just because i like it a bit spicy.
- 2 1⁄2 quarts water
- 2 lbs pork bones
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce (nuoc mam)
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 2 shallots (only the white part) or 2 scallions, chopped (only the white part)
- 1⁄2 lb crabmeat (canned, frozen or fresh)
- 1⁄4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 egg
- 1 (15 ounce) canwhite canned asparagus, undrained
- 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh coriander (Chinese parsley)
- 1⁄4 cup chopped scallion top
Directions See How It's Made
- Dissolve the cornstarch in the 2 tbsp of water. Set aside.
- Bring water to a boil and put the pork bones inches
- Bring back to a boil, then cover and continue to boil the bones for 1 hour. Occasionaly skim the top.
- Remove the bones from the stock and discard. Add the salt and the fish sauce to the stock.
- Heat the oil in a wok and add the chopped garlic and shallots; add the crab meat and fry for 5 minutes over high heat.
- Sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon of black pepper, stirring constantly, then add the crab meat mixture to the soup and bring to a boil.
- Add the cornstarch-and-water mixture and stir for a few minutes.
- Break the egg open and drop it into the actively boiling soup while stirring.
- Cook, still stirring, for about 2 minutes, then drop in the asparagus, along with the liquid from the can and the rest of the black pepper.
- Continue to cook until the asparagus is heated through.
- Sprinkle the coriander and scallion green over the soup before serving.