hot and sour soup

hot and sour soup

This soup usually gets a bad rep here in North America (at least to me) and I never order it at Chinese restaurants here. I also am not a great fan of the soup. The best version I’ve had of this soup was made for me by an ex-colleague from China back home in Singapore. She was a really good cook who whipped up some of the best Chinese fare I’ve ever had.

The hubs on the other hand loves this soup because he loves sour things. I made this soup to use up the tofu and bamboo shoots we had in the fridge. It was also a nice soup to have on a cold day. The hubs was initially very skeptical of this recipe since it was very “westernized”, but the soup turned out pretty authentic.

Hot and Sour Soup

(taken and adapted from here)


  • 4 cups chicken stock or broth (or 4 cups water and 4 chicken bouillon cubes)
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, diced (shiitake mushrooms work great here)
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic chili sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar or Chinese Chinkiang black vinegar
  • 1/3 cup canned bamboo shoots, julienned
  • 3 oz block of tofu, cut into 1/4 inch dice
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch and 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 green onion stalks, diced (including tops)
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil


1. Bring chicken broth to a simmer in a 2-quart saucepan.

2. Add soy sauce, shredded meat, mushrooms and garlic red chili paste.

3. Simmer for five minutes.

4. Add white pepper, white vinegar, bamboo shoots, tofu.

5. Simmer for five minutes.

6. Combine two tablespoons of cornstarch with two tablespoons of cold water in a cup. Stir until mixture is smooth. Add cornstarch mixture to soup and stir well.

7. Simmer for five minutes until soup is thickened.

8. Beat egg in a cup until yolk and white are combined. Pour beaten egg slowly, in a fine stream into soup. Stir soup several times.

9. Wait 30 seconds.

10. Add green onions and sesame oil to soup. Stir well. Remove from heat.

11. Serve hot.


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