It’s late, you’re tired and peeping into the fridge, all you’ve got are unidentified bobbles of leftovers that require cooking. While reaching for Pizza Hut on speed dial might be your biological response, today’s recipe takes about 10 minutes and you can throw in anything you want to make a warm and satisfying stew. I often make this one pot dish when I want a little bit of everything yet can’t be bothered to cook anything separately. It also makes a great single serving meal any time of the day.
Someone had asked me what “type” of Chinese cuisine this falls under and truth be told I’m not absolutely certain. While there are regional flavours and specialties, many people with a mixed heritage cook a mixed style. So while I’d say stews and roast are usually typical of north, some of the ingredients I add are more southern.
- 2 deep fried tofu puffs
- 3-4 konjac bundles
- 4-5 slices shrimp bar
- 3 leaves of lettuce
- chopped spring onion
- sliced ginger
- dried mini shrimp
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1 cup water
- canola / peanut oil
- 1 teaspoon oyster sauce
- 1 teaspoon hoisin sauce
- 1-2 teaspoon satay sauce
Optional: 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
HOW TO COOK:
- Prep: Start by cutting all your washed ingredients into bit size pieces. I prefer medium slices so it has a satisfying bite yet cooks quickly.
- Make the soup: On medium heat, put a little cooking oil a small pot and fry the mini dried shrimp plus chopped spring onion until fragrant and the shrimp looks slightly golden. Add water and chicken stock along with hoisin, oyster and satay sauce. Chili sauce or oil can be added as well if you love it spicy. Pop in the ginger, it’s adds warmth to your stew for cold days.
- Add the goods: When the soup comes to a rolling boil, add your dry ingredients starting with ones that take the longest to cook or absorb flavour. Konjac noodles are pretty sturdy and can go in right away so don’t be afraid to let it cook. Bring to a boil and turn to medium heat to let simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the delicate goods: If you are using leaf vegetables, add them in now and let the pot cook for another 15-30 seconds. Turn off the stove, garnish with green onions (or parsley or cilantro).
- Serve hot in a mug or bowl.
TIPS & THOUGHTS:
- Don’t overcook your leafy greens so add them last in the stew as they go mushy really fast if left too long.
- If you use silken tofu, chop it into small chunks so it doesn’t break easily while boiling and stewing in the soup.
- Fresh seafood is delicious in this stew or thinly sliced hotpot meat if you just so happen to have some.
- Konjac noodles can take a lot of heat and cooking without dissolving but if you are substituting for regular vermicelli, keep an eye on the heat/time to make sure it doesn’t melt into nothing in your pot from overcooking. I’ve done it and it’s bad.