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Soup for the cold

February 12, 2012

Decent soup was something that eluded me while living in Broadview – not quite sure why other than not having the patience to hang around in the community kitchen for the ingredients to release their goodness. I’ve made several soups and porridges in this apartment – matzoh ball soup, hot and soup soup, wonton soup…I don’t think I’ve made noodle soup yet but I probably could. The most recent soup is miso-based with shrimp balls, daikon radish, and wood ear but I didn’t take a photo of it. However, I have also enjoyed the warmth of hot pot and pho this season:

The Vegetarian Lunch at Shabu Shabu Zen:

Not the first time I’ve been here – Tifferoo and family invited me to lunch with them months ago. But it was rainy on the day T-Barz arrived for her birthday weekend visit and hot pot seemed appropriate. I love Asian greens and soy products in kimchee broth. Could have done without the mushy potstickers but everything else was fantastic for just $9.

Pho from Xinh Xinh Vietnamese Restaurant:

I was having a really off day and desperately needed some nourishing distraction. I was originally headed to Pho Hoa right next door but then couldn’t handle the thought of doing a work day lunch in a restaurant that big. Thankfully, Xinh Xinh is a down-to-earth storefront where little tables are lined up for people eating alone. The soup was sweet and rich. There was plenty of beef and noodles and sweet sauce and Sriracha for dipping. In my strange state of mind, I totally stiffed the staff on their $1 tip (hefty bowl for $6.50) and felt crappy about it for the rest of the day even though it was just $1. That’s the last time I try to tip on the actual bill instead of bill + tax. Sure, I don’t need to tip on tax, but gosh, I hate the feeling of being unintentionally stingy. This was really good after a minor banh mi craze that I might be revisiting for lunch in a couple hours…

I still have a box of matzoh ball mix left – I wonder if it would be weird with beef balls? Maybe I should get a chicken…

4 Comments leave one →
  1. February 12, 2012 10:23 am

    If you don’t mind being somewhat sacrilegious, you could do something I wouldn’t mind seeing more of, which is Jewish-Chinese mixed cuisine. Replace the doughy outside of a steamed pork 包子 with matzo meal, then steam. Or just steam the matzo as a bun, like 馒头。

    Or, I recently did a mini version of a Cantonese stock, where the same soup is recycled over and over, with more things added each day to keep the stock going. Started with pork leg bones, then added in some chicken bones for good measure. By the end of the third day, I was thinking, “man, this really needs something starchy and hearty”. I ended up with a northern chinese style veggie soup, filling the pot to the top with eggplant, tomato, long beans, whole garlic cloves, 木耳, and potatoes and carrots. Delicious, but I would definitely have liked something bready.

    • cissyhuang permalink*
      February 12, 2012 3:44 pm

      I definitely don’t mind being sacriligeous when it comes to good eats but the matzoh ball mix I have isn’t doughy – it’s more like a thick batter that I shape into balls and drop into boiling broth. Then it magically puffs up into matzoh balls so I don’t think I could encapsulate pork in it. Good suggestion though – maybe a matzoh ball and pork ball soup.

      My only objection to your recycled soup project is that I had a bad food poisoning experience with recycled hot pot soup and even now the idea of adding new things to an established soup makes me nervous.

  2. Chickpea permalink
    February 12, 2012 12:31 pm

    This post reminded me of a neat little noodle joint in New York where ‘Chelle and I met up with one of her NYU friends. If ever you and I are near that city remind me to take you there, the tables were tall, hefty, and wooden, and the food was absolutely amazing.

    Also, Nina made me pumpkin soup last night in an attempt to cure a pretty beastly cold. She came home with a butternut squash and insisted that it was a pumpkin, and I was too amused, (and a bit too sick/tired) to care if this was a translation issue or a foreign vegetable classification issue. Either way it was amazing.

    • cissyhuang permalink*
      February 12, 2012 3:53 pm

      I don’t think I’ve ever had pumpkin soup, but I love butternut squash, and they’re probably all in the same family anyways. And there are so many varieties of pumpkin too. Is it a German thing to have pumpkin soup for colds?

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