Dipping squid hotpot


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Food and Travels: Asia

Food and Travels

By Alastair Hendy

Published 2004

  • About

A Vietnamese fondue-cum-Mongolian hotpot. Use fine slivers of tender beef steak if you’re nonplussed by squid. You could just ladle this all out as a soup.


  • 2 medium-sized prepared and cleaned squid, cut into rings
  • 4 hot red chillies, finely chopped
  • a handful of coriander leaves
  • 4 small shallots, sliced
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tomatoes, quartered and deseeded
  • handful of fresh pineapple slices, quartered
  • 4 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 sticks lemongrass, trimmed and smashed
  • handful of canned bamboo shoots or fresh beansprouts
  • 1 baby leek or 2 spring onions, sliced
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • salt
  • fish sauce


Lay the squid on a plate and sprinkle with a little chopped chilli and some coriander leaves. Gently fry the shallots and half the remaining chopped chilli in the oil without browning, then stir in the tomatoes and pineapple and fry for a minute or so more. Stir in the vinegar, lemongrass, bamboo shoots, leek, caster sugar and a litre of water, and season well with salt and fish sauce. Let this bubble for a good 5 minutes. Pour into a fondue pan or steamboat hotpot set on the table, with its fuel and flame. Using chopsticks, add some squid to the simmering pot, letting it cook for a minute or so. Ladle back into a small bowl, with a little of the broth and its goodies (minus the lemongrass). Pile on coriander and the remaining chilli, and eat.