Taste of Asia

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4 Asian Style Soup Recommendations For Winter

When the winter wind starts to blow, a bowl of hot soup is the best way to go to stave off the cold and hunger pangs! Nothing quite satisfies and warms the heart and belly in the winter like a hot bowl of soup. And when it comes to soup, you can count on Asian cuisine to give you a delicious, heartwarming array. Asian cuisine is well-known for its diverse selection of soups, and some are even said to have restorative and healing properties. While we don’t know the extent or truth behind these claims one thing is for sure: these Asian soups are absolutely delicious! And with just a few steps and ingredients, you can cook them up in your own kitchen! Take a look at these popular Asian soup recipes and give them a try:

Wonton Soup

Wonton soup is a popular Chinese soup that can be served as a hearty appetiser or main dish. The soup and wontons are prepared separately before being combined at the very end, and both can be adjusted to suit your taste. Wontons can also be prepared in a big batch and frozen in several serving sizes. So the next time your tummy starts rumbling for this hearty dish, all you have to do is boil your wontons and soup and you’re all set!

What you’ll need:
For the wontons:
1 pack wonton wrappers (80 wrappers)
230g ground lean pork
230g peeled shrimp, chopped into small pieces
1 tablespoon finely minced ginger
2 green onions finely chopped
1 tablespoon light or regular soy sauce
2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sesame oil

For the soup:
10 cups chicken stock
4 tablespoons light or regular soy sauce
2 slices ginger

For serving:
4 stalks baby bok choy cut to pieces
4 green onions, chopped
2 tablespoons sesame oil
chili oil (to taste)
Cilantro for garnish

Directions:
1. In a big bowl combine all wonton filling ingredients (except wonton wrappers of course) until well mixed and sticky. You could also use a food processor or blender to mix all ingredients into a nice paste, but add the shrimps last so they are finely chopped but don’t become paste.
2. To make the wontons, place a wonton wrapper in one hand and place a teaspoon or so of the filling (you can adjust the amount depending on the size of your wrapper) in the centre of the wrapper. Wet the edges of the wonton wrapper with water and fold the wrapper diagonally to create a triangle, pressing the edges to seal. Fold the identical corners in on each other and press again to seal. Repeat for the rest of the wontons.
3. To make the soup, combine all soup ingredients together and bring to a boil. Let boil for 10 minutes before removing ginger slices. Place on lowest heat setting to keep warm as you cook the wontons.
4. To cook wontons, bring a big pot of water to a boil and add 10 to 20 wontons at a time over medium heat until wontons float to the surface. Continue to boil until wrappers are swollen. Check if the wontons are cooked through by scooping one out with a slotted spoon and splitting it open. Once fully cooked, remove wantons and place in individual serving bowls. You may then add the bok choy to the water and cook until tender. Once done, remove them from the pot and place in individual bowls along with the cooked wantons.
5. In each serving bowl with bok choy and wantons, add around a tablespoon of green onions, and soy sauce and sesame oil according to taste. Pour in 1 and 1/2 cups of hot soup in each bowl and garnish with cilantro and chili oil.

Chinese Corn Soup

If you’re fond of those egg drop soups that come with Chinese stir-fry meals, you are going to love this soup! It’s a richer, meatier form of egg drop soup, with corn and chicken meat. It can be the perfect partner to a stir-fried meal or a filling light dinner.

What you’ll need:
1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
1 green onion, chopped
200g ground chicken
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups frozen corn
1/4 cup frozen peas (optional)
2 tablespoons potato starch
3 eggs (or 4 egg whites), beaten

Directions:
1. Heat oil in a big pot and add ginger and the white part of the chopped green onion. Stir until fragrant.
2. Add the ground chicken to the pot and cook until the surface turns pale. Add the salt and keep cooking until chicken is almost cooked through.
3. Add the chicken stock and 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil before adding frozen corn and peas, and bring to a boil again.
4. While waiting for the soup to boil, mix the potato starch with 1/4 cup water in a small bowl. After the soup has been boiling for a few minutes, turn the heat off and swirl the potato starch slurry into the soup. Mix well.
5. Slowly drizzle the eggs into the soup in a swirling motion. Stir lightly until the eggs are well incorporated. Add more salt to taste.

Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

Of course we can’t talk soup without including the iconic chicken noodle soup, and this one has rich Asian flavours blended into it. With its mixture of curry and coconut milk, and a dash of fresh cilantro, this Asian noodle soup is far from ordinary!

What you’ll need:
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 red bell peppers, chopped
1 large carrot, cut into thin bite-sized pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Kosher salt
2 (400ml) cans coconut milk (well shaken)
3 cups chicken broth
2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, and more for garnish
1 pack ramen noodles, seasoning packet discarded
Lime wedges for serving

Directions:
1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper and carrots and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and stir until fragrant, then add the curry powder and cayenne pepper, and season with salt. Stir until well combined.
2. Pour in coconut milk and chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Then add the shredded chicken, cilantro and ramen noodles until the noodles are cooked firm.
3. Serve warm with lime and garnish with cilantro.

Quick and Easy Hot and Sour Soup

Rich, thick and flavourful, one might think this soup is difficult to make, but it actually only takes a few easy-to-find ingredients and less than 30 minutes to prepare! You’ll be slurping this hot and sour bowl of goodness in no time!

What you’ll need:
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 can (411g) chicken broth
1 and 1/2 cups water
200g soft tofu cut into strips
170g white button mushrooms, stems trimmed and caps quartered
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 and 1/2 tablespoons Chinese vinegar, apple cider vinegar or rice wine vinegar
1 teaspon dark soy sauce for colour
3 dashes of ground white pepper or black pepper
1 egg, beaten
Chili oil to taste, chopped scallions for serving

Directions:
1. Combine cornstarch with 3 tablespoons water. Mix well and set aside.
2. In a soup pot over medium heat, bring broth and water to a boil. Add the tofu and mushrooms and cook for about 2 minutes. Then add the soy sauce, dark soy sauce, vinegar and pepper. Combine well before adding the cornstarch mixture, stirring continuously until the soup thickens.
3. Turn off the heat and slowly swirl the beaten eggs into the soup. Serve immediately with chili oil and scallions, if preferred.

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