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Shredded Pork and Cellophane Noodle Soup
Weldon Russell, The Heritage of Chinese Cooking
The Chinese do not really consider cellophane
noodles as a "staple." Made of green mung bean starch, they are usually
used as an interesting ingredient to accompany meats or other vegetables in a
normal "rice meal." They are popular throughout China, Southeast Asia and
Japan. Each region of China has its own version of this soup. In
Shanghai, meatballs in the soup make it a hearty meal by itself; the peppery,
crunchy Sichuan (Szechwan) pickled vegetable (jar choi) transports us
immediately to Sichuan (Szechwan) and to the Zhejiang (Chekiang) provinces,
while the mustard greens (mui choi) place it distinctly in the southern province
of Guangdong (Kwangtung).
2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 slices fresh ginger, cut ¼ inch thick
4 ounces pork fillet, shredded into
2 teaspoons dry sherry
6 cups chicken broth
6 dried mushroom, soaked for soaked for 45 minutes, stalks removed
and thinly sliced
½ cup carrot, cut into ¼-inch thick julienne
1 cup zucchini, cut into ¼-inch thick julienne
1½ tablespoons Sichuan preserved vegetables (jar choi), available in
Chinese stores (optional)
1 ounce cellophane noodles, soaked for 30 minutes in warm water and cut
into 6-inch lengths
For The Seasonings:
½ teaspoon salt
pinch white pepper
¼ teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon sesame oil
Heat a stockpot, then add the oil and heat until just it
is just beginning to smoke.
Sauté the ginger slices, and stir-fry
the shredded pork, until the color changes.
Pour in the rice wine.
Add the broth, mushrooms and carrot and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add the zucchini, preserved mustard greens, bean curd and
cellophane noodles and simmer for 2 minutes.
Stir in the
seasonings and serve in a soup tureen.