Considered the stew of East Asian cuisines, hot pot consists of a metal pot with low boiling chicken stock, surrounded with fresh ingredients ready to be cooked. Typical ingredients are tofu, thinly sliced meat, leafy vegetables, mushrooms, wontons, seafood, and meatballs. Hot pot gives the chef an unlimited access to different flavors, as almost any ingredient that can be boiled and eaten can change the flavor of the hotpot soup. There are also a variety of sauces that can be used for dip, and styles vary with country to country. A very simple idea, but extremely satsifying especially for cold days as the ingredients stay hot while eaten. As an afterthought, noodles can be added to the soup as it now consists of a multitude of delicious flavors from all the different ingredients. Serve the noodles with some hot pot ingredients, chopped onions and parsley to enjoy noodles with an explosion of flavor!
Ingredients (serves 8-10)
Spice bag (4 star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 3 bay leaves, 1 tbs fennel seeds, 1 tbs cumin seeds, 1 tsp coriander seeds, 2 tbs sichuan peppercorns, 1/2 tsp 5 spice powder, 1/4 tsp black pepper)
Garlic (5 cloves)
Ginger (1.5" knob)
Beef Shank (0.75lbs)
Douban Jiang (2 tbs)
Soy Sauce (2 tbs)
Sugar (1 tsp)
Chinese rice wine Mijiu (1 tbs)
Green onions (3)
Yellow onion (1)
Large carrots (2)
Green onions (chopped)
Pickled mustard greens (chopped)
Beef shank already pre-cut into pieces. Sometimes it is difficult to find and you may need to get the slab of beef shank and chop them in bite size pieces yourself. On the right is douban jiang, the main flavor of the broth.
Chop all 4 tomatoes into 4 pieces each, and make sure you cut out the stem on top. You may de-seed if you want to keep the broth free from seeds.
5 cloves of garlic and 1.5" ginger knob, also cut 3 green onions. Will be needing the white part for the stock, save green to be chopped for garnish.
Also cut 1 yellow onion in 8 pieces. Here's a picture of all the ingredients to be stir-fried and mixed in later.
Start with a little cooking oil, drop the garlic and ginger to cook a bit. Dump the shanks in to brown them a bit for a couple minutes. Add 2 tbs douban jiang, 2 tbs soy sauce, and 1 tsp sugar and mix. Add the rest of the ingredients and stirfry until browned and softened.
It should look something like this!
Add 8 to 10 cups of water to the pot. Boil and add the spice bag. Cover and simmer for a couple hours.
After 2 hours, everything should be cooked and should be smelling fantastic!
For some sweetness to the broth, you may cut some carrots in bite size pieces and add to the bot. Boil for another 8-10 min for the carrots to cook and soften up.
Prepare the taiwanese noodles and some bok choi in a separate wok. Cook for about 5-7 minutes.
Strain the noodles and veggies and place in a bowl. Add the soup and get ready to eat!
You can add some chopped green onions and cilantro if you'd like, also some chopped preserved mustard stems for additional flavor.