Tofu & Pork Soup

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This is a very simple soup that relies on some of the tofu breaking up and helping to thicken the dish. Feel free to add a couple of chopped chillies at the end to spice it up, or a drop or two of chilli oil if you like it hot — I know I do.

Ingredients

  • 250 g (9 oz) silken tofu, cut into 2 cm (¾ inch) cubes
  • 150 g ( oz) pork neck
  • 5 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in warm water for 30 minutes, stalks removed, finely sliced
  • 1.25 litres (44 fl oz/5 cups) fresh chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons grated palm sugar (jaggery)
  • 3 teaspoons oyster sauce
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 knob of ginger, peeled and cut into julienne
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon shaoxing
  • 4 tablespoons yellow bean soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Chinese red vinegar
  • a pinch of Sichuan pepper

Method

Put the stock, sugar, oyster sauce and shiitakes into a pot and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Add the pork neck to the soup and simmer gently for a further 20 minutes, skimming the surface of any impurities. Remove the pork and finely slice the meat. Return the pork to the soup, add all the remaining ingredients except the Sichuan pepper, and simmer gently for a further 2 minutes. Sprinkle with the Sichuan pepper to serve.

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