Chinese Hot-And-Sour Soup
1 oz.  boneless pork loin -- cut into 1/4-inch-thick strips (2/3 cup)
2 tsp  dark soy sauce*
4 small  chinese dried black mushrooms*
12 small  dried tree ear mushrooms*
1-1/2 Tbsp  cornstarch
12   dried lily buds* (sometimes called golden needles)
1/2 cup  canned sliced bamboo shoots* -- cut lengthwise into
1/8-   inchwide strips (from an 8-oz can)
2 Tbsp  red-wine vinegar
2 Tbsp  rice vinegar (not seasoned)
1 Tbsp  light soy sauce*
1-1/2 tsp  sugar
1 tsp  kosher salt
2 Tbsp  peanut oil
4 cup  reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 oz.  firm tofu (about a quarter of a block) -- rinsed and
  drained, then cut into 1/4-inch-thick strips (3 to 4)
2 large  eggs
2 tsp  asian sesame oil*
1-1/2 tsp  freshly ground white pepper
2 Tbsp  thinly sliced scallion greens
2 Tbsp  fresh whole cilantro leaves
toss pork with dark soy sauce in a bowl until pork is well coated. 
soak black and tree ear mushrooms in 3 cups boiling-hot water in another 
bowl (water should cover mushrooms), turning over black mushrooms 
occasionally, until softened, about 30 minutes. (tree ears will expand 
significantly.) cut out and discard stems from black mushrooms, then 
excess liquid from caps into bowl and thinly slice caps. remove tree ears 
from bowl, reserving liquid, and trim off any hard nubs. if large, cut 
ears into bite-size pieces. stir together 1/4 cup mushroom-soaking liquid 
(discard remainder) with cornstarch in a small bowl and set aside. 
meanwhile, soak lily buds in about 1 cup warm water until softened, about 
minutes, then drain. trim off tough tips of lily buds. cut lily buds in 
crosswise, then tear each half lengthwise into 2 or 3 shreds. 
cover bamboo shoots with cold water by 2 inches in a small saucepan, then 
bring just to a boil (to remove bitterness) and drain in a sieve. 
stir together vinegars, light soy sauce, sugar, and salt in another small 
heat a wok over high heat until a bead of water vaporizes within 1 to 2 
seconds of contact. pour peanut oil down side of wok, then swirl oil, 
tilting wok to coat sides. add pork and stir-fry until meat just changes 
color, about 1 minute, then add black mushrooms, tree ears, lily buds, and 
bamboo shoots and stir-fry 1 minute. 
add broth and bring to a boil, then add tofu. return to a boil and add 
vinegar mixture. stir cornstarch mixture, then add to broth and return to 
boil, stirring. (liquid will thicken.) reduce heat to moderate and simmer 
beat eggs with a fork and add a few drops of sesame oil. add eggs to soup 
a thin stream, stirring slowly in one direction with a spoon. stir in 
pepper, then drizzle in remaining sesame oil and divide among 6 to 8 
sprinkle with scallions and cilantro before serving. 
*available at asian foods markets, uwajimaya (800-889-1928), and kam man 
food products inc. (212-571-0330). 
makes 6 to 8 first-course servings. 
this authentic soup is essentially an ancient doctor's curative that 
combines the healing magic of chicken broth, the circulation-enhancing 
qualities of tree fungus and lily buds, and the antiseptic properties of 
vinegar. the heat isn't from chiles - it's actually from freshly ground 
white pepper. 
bruce cost prefers the flavor of pearl river bridge golden superior brand 
soy sauce for this dish and for the sticky rice with chinese sausage and 
dried scallops. 
per serving (excluding unknown items): 440 calories; 36g fat (73.4% 
from fat); 11g protein; 18g carbohydrate; trace dietary fiber; 374mg 
cholesterol; 1992mg sodium. exchanges: 1/2 grain(starch); 1 1/2 lean meat; 
6 1/2 fat; 1/2 other carbohydrates. 
(ID: 2963) Mirror: Fri, Apr 8, 2005

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