Before I go back to to the fun but most likely not too healthy home-made candy, let's start off the secular new year right with a healthy home-made vegan soup.
Originally a meat-based soup with a chicken broth base, I made a batch of Hot and Sour soup with neither meat nor bird juice in order to serve with a dairy dinner. I was astonished how great it was! Very easy to make as well, just a little chopping, then practically heat and eat.
Obviously, it is not a restaurant clone. But on a cold winter's day, or when you are trying to get over a cold, the simplicity (not to mention the garlic and ginger) does a throat good.
Rice vinegar is much milder than the American white stuff. If you don't have rice vinegar (and you really should pick some up, you will want to make this soup a lot), you might be able to sub with cider vinegar instead. Start out with barely a teaspoon, taste and add a little bit more at a time. The sour taste should not be overpowering.
TheHubby liked the soup, but thought it could use some bean sprouts. I think bamboo shoots as well. I'm guessing maybe a half-cup of fresh sprouts and/or 1/4 cup of julienned-sliced shoots, tossed in just after the second simmer. If anyone does this, please comment and let us all know how it came out.
The most important part of this recipe is remembering to fish out and discard the ginger slices before serving. Not that I'd forget to do that or anything. Just sayin' ...
This soup has been entered in Lisa's Kitchen No Croutons Required vegetarian soup and salad challenge. Visit Lisa's blog to check out the other entries ... and tell them I sent you!
Healthy Very Low Fat Parve Vegan & Probably Gluten-free as well Hot and Sour Soup - Easy
Adapted from Food 52
1 tsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. chopped garlic (about 1 clove)
4 slices (1/4" each) fresh ginger
3 scallions (green parts only), finely sliced on the diagonal (divided)
4 cups vegetable or parve chicken broth
8 oz. firm regular (or firm or extra-firm silken) tofu, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
4 or 5 medium white mushrooms, cleaned and thinly sliced
1 tsp. granulated sugar
1/3 cup rice vinegar, or to taste
2 Tbl. soy sauce (regular or light), or to taste
1/4 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper, or to taste
1 tsp. sesame oil
In a 3 quart saucepan, heat vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger and 2 of the scallions, stirring continuously for about 30 seconds or so. Avoid letting the garlic brown and become bitter.
Add stock, cover and bring to a simmer. Add tofu, mushrooms, sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, black pepper and sesame oil; recover and bring the soup back to a simmer over medium-high heat.
Divide soup among 4 bowls and garnish each with remaining sliced scallion. Serve hot. Leftovers can be stored in a tightly covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days.