Thursday, March 22, 2012

Chinese Sizzling Rice Soup with Pork Stock

My freezer is packed tight now that I have my 2012 pork. Because I need to keep more than just beef and pork in my freezer, I desperately need to make some room. Since I just took the Stupendous Stocks class at Portland Culinary Workshop, I decided to use my new skills and make pork stock.

8 lbs pork soup bones
1/4 lb carrots (about 3), roughly chopped
1/4 lb celery (about 4 stalks), roughly chopped
1/2 lb onion (about 2 large), roughly chopped
2 bay leaves
2 sprigs thyme
5(ish) black peppercorns

1. Caramelize bones in oven (30 - 45 minutes at 450F) on a cookie sheet. Deglaze the cookie sheet with about a cup or so of red wine.

2. Place bones to a large stockpot and add enough water to cover.

3. Bring to a simmer, skimming off foam and impurities.

4. Add the remaining ingredients, and simmer on very low temperature for at least 8 hours.

5. Strain the stock through a fine mesh. Let sit until the fat has solidified on the top, and skim off.

6. Refrigerate.

I didn't know exactly what I wanted to make with the stock, but a soup seemed like the most obvious choice. During some down time at work, I perused many many recipes using pork stock until coming across a recipe for sizzling rice soup (which, by the way, did not call for pork stock). Sizzling rice soup is one of my favorite things to order at a Chinese restaurant, and it reminds me of my childhood. Why not give it a try?

1 cup uncooked white rice – should make 2 cups cooked
6 oz. fresh shrimp, de-shelled and de-veined
10 oz. skinless, boneless chicken pieces cut into chunks and cooked (saute or use leftover chicken) 
1 Tbsp cornstarch
8 cups lightly seasoned homemade pork stock (or use chicken broth)
2 cans sliced water chestnuts
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 cup snow pea pods, cut into 1 inch pieces
3/4 tsp salt 
1/2 tsp pepper (preferably white pepper but any ground pepper will work) 
4 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tsp grated fresh ginger
2 tsp soy sauce

1. Before starting to make the soup cook the rice. Then, spread cooked rice in a thin layer on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake about one hour at 300 degrees, turning the rice layer over after 30 minutes. (Ovens vary; you may need to bake a bit longer to get it crispy, but don’t let it burn.) Break rice apart and set aside. Fry and add to soup as directed.

1a. I saved the shells from the shrimp to simmer with the pork stock while the rice was baking. You don't have to do this, but it may or may not give the broth a more fishy flavor, in a good way. I sauteed the shrimp shells until pink in my Dutch oven then added half the stock. I simmered it for almost an hour, then strained the stock.

2. Mix together the chicken with half the cornstarch, sherry, ginger, and soy sauce in one bowl. Mix the shrimp with the other half of those ingredients in another bowl.  Set both these aside. 

3. Into the soup pot put the broth and water chestnuts. Bring to a boil, add salt and pepper. Reduce heat and allow to simmer 3 or 4 minutes. Add any fresh vegetables you are using.

4. Heat 3 Tbsp oil until hot in a frying pan; place rice in oil to brown.

5. Add chicken and shrimp mixture to hot broth; stir and return to a boil. If adding fresh shredded greens, now is the time!

6. Remove rice from oil with slotted spoon, drain very briefly on paper towels.

7. Carefully pour soup in large serving tureen – or just serve from the stock pot. Tableside, add rice to soup. If both are hot enough, your soup should sizzle. 

8. Dish into serving bowls immediately and enjoy!

This recipe turned out better than I could have imagined. It almost tasted like it does at a Chinese restaurant, except my rice didn't fry quite right. Also, I think I would omit the cornstarch, rice wine vinegar, ginger, and soy sauce marinade for the chicken and shrimp. Sizzling rice soup should have a delicate flavor, and the sweet/salty of the marinade threw it off a little. Other than that, delicious.

Bon appetit!

1 comment:

  1. definitely! I've followed you on google
    your blog is lovely by the way,waiting you on my blog xxx