Ellen Britt - A Teenage Foodie who Explores Dinner, Dessert and Salad Ideas
This is quite possibly my favorite Hot Pot recipe of all time. A friend of mine recommended buying some instant packets of soup base from Little Sheep. There are tons of different flavours but so far, I like the lamb soup base the best. The key to a good soup base of course is homemade stock. Whenever we buy cooked chickens from the grocery store, we make soup stock with the bones and fresh vegetables. There is nothing better and it makes a wonderful broth for a hot pot. You don't have to add broth to the Little Sheep soup base, but I recommend that it is better than adding just water.
Chinese hot pot is a centuries-old, yet timeless, tradition that celebrates the flavors of communal dining. A traditional style of cooking and eating, it is enjoyed by chefs and families alike. In this blog post, we'll explore all you need to know about Chinese hot pot and why it's such a beloved dish.
What Is Hot Pot?
Hot pot is a type of Chinese soup that is cooked in a large, shallow metal pot over an open flame or electric stove. It's usually served with a variety of meats, seafood and vegetables cooked in a flavorful broth. The broth can be either spicy or mild depending on your preferences. The broth can also vary in flavors as well as ingredients. Commonly used ingredients include chilies, garlic, ginger, star anise and Sichuan peppercorns (known as hua jiao).
How to Enjoy Hot Pot
The best way to enjoy hot pot is to gather around the table with friends and family. Everyone selects their favorite ingredients from the variety of meats, seafood and vegetables laid out at the table. Then each person adds their chosen ingredients into the simmering broth one at a time until they are cooked through. Finally everyone enjoys their meal together! It’s important to note that you should cook your food for no longer than 3 minutes per ingredient so it doesn’t become too overcooked or tough.
Tips for Enjoying Hot Pot
When enjoying hot pot there are few tips you should keep in mind to ensure your experience is enjoyable for everyone involved! Firstly make sure that everyone has enough space at the table so they can comfortably reach all of the ingredients without having to compete for them or fight over who gets what! Secondly make sure that everyone takes small portions so that there is enough food for everybody throughout the entire meal! Lastly don't forget to enjoy this experience with your loved ones - it's not just about eating but also enjoying each others company as well!
1 Packet of Little Sheep, Lamb Soup Flavored Seasoning mix. This parkette contains the seasonings, soup base, dried scallions, longan, red jujube and goji berries.
6 cups chicken broth
4 to 5 scallions (white parts only)
6 chopped garlics (some recipes call for 20 chopped garlics)
1 Chinese cabbage
½ head of broccoli
1 bunch of fresh spinach
2 cups of cubed firm tofu
3 tbsp of Spanish onions - feel free to add more
2 cups chopped mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 pkg. of compressed Auricula fungus (this is a black tree fungus). Looks terrible but tastes good!
2 cups of bean sprouts
2 frozen packages of hot pot meats. The hot pot meat is very thin and comes in small rolls and can only be found in Asian grocery stores generally in the frozen food department. I choose pork and beef for this hot pot. The selection of meats however is huge, and I would choose your favorites. You can’t go wrong.
1 pkg of udon noodles separated
2 cups of Chinese pork dumplings. We get ours from a small Chinese store that makes a lot of their dumplings by hand. These are the best! You may have to try a few brands before discovering ones that are right for you. The alternative is to make them yourself. Guess you can tell I’m a bit fussy when it comes to dumping.
2 tbsp hot sauce on the side. I strongly recommend Lao Gan Ma, Chili in Oil with Peanuts Hot Sauce
Prepare the packet, broth, scallions, and garlic in advance. Bring to boil and then let it simmer for 2 to 3 hours if you want to get the full flavour. I usually can’t wait the 2 to 3 hours and it still tastes fabulous! If you do let it simmer it may be necessary to add more broth. Seriously who can wait that long.....
Next prepare the fresh vegetables and dumplings on a platter. I try to be creative with my arrangement. The meats are prepared on a separate plate just in case you have left over vegetables. Feel free to add whatever you want! This meal is a wonderful way to use the vegetables in your fridge. You can’t go wrong.
For this dinner we used a fondue pot, but you can use a propane cooking element with a pot on top. This gives you the flexibility of using any household pot plus it does not have an electric cord running across your table. We purchased one today and I can’t wait to use it!!!
Fill your fondue pot or cooking pot with the stock mixture and bring it to a boil. Next add whatever meats, dumplings, and vegetables you want. I recommend pacing yourself so that everything is not put into the pot at the same time. This way your vegetables won't over cook plus you get more time to talk about your day.
This is a super fun, family friendly meal.
Totally the best dinner ever!!!!
Choose your favorite vegetables. These are some of mine!
Huge fan of dumplings!
The hot pot meats used for this dinner were pork and beef.
So yummy! The tofu is cubed at the back of the photo.
Totally love this hot sauce. It has a meaty taste because of the peanuts. Seriously suggest you try this brand. When I was in grade 7 and taking Mandarin lessons the teacher spent an entire class talking about products made by this company. It is a mother and son company which is very famous in China.
We have hot pot soups frequently in our home. The four images above are from different meals - all just a bit different when it comes to vegetables and meats - but all equally yummy. Have fun exploring your cooking creativity!