It’s cold, dreary, rainy, and blustery and that means today is the perfect day for soup. If I’m brave and not lazy, I will take all the children* to the store and acquire the following ingredients:
2 lbs. of pork
1 T. oil
1 T. minced garlic
1 t. ginger powder
1/4 c. soy sauce (since we try to stay soy free I’ll use coconut aminos)
1/4 c. brown sugar
3 chopped green onions
1/2 oz. dried mushrooms soaked in 1 c. water
2 c. fresh spinach
1 c. bean sprouts (not necessary but I like the texture)
2-4 cups chicken stock, the amount depends on if you want a brothy soup or a stew
Then I will do this:
First up, braise your pork. Heat your oil in a heavy stockpot. Sear your pork on all sides until it’s brown and pretty. Remove it from the pot and toss the garlic and ginger in for about 30 seconds. Add the chopped green onions and stir ’em around for 30 seconds or so. Add 2 c. chicken stock to start, brown sugar, soy sauce and Chinese 5 Spice Powder. Stir, stir, stir and get all the good bits off the bottom of the pot. Chop up your pork into cubes and return to the pot. Cover and let it simmer for a couple of hours, stirring every once in a while. Trust me, this is worth the time.
After two or three hours, throw in the mushrooms with their soaking water (you could cut them but Mr. G and SG don’t like mushrooms so leaving them whole makes it easier for them to pick around the offending fungi bits). At this point decide if you want soup or stew. I want soup so I add a cup or two more of chicken stock (which is usually, actually Better than Bouillon). Bring it back to a simmer and toss in the spinach and let it wilt.
And then? I will ladle that awesome goodness into some bowls and eat up.
If I’m lazy (and, let’s be honest, this is the perfect weather for laziness), we’ll have egg drop soup because that doesn’t require me to leave my house wearing real pants.
Someone who loves me very much could go to Blue Koi for their braised pork soup and save me the trouble of cooking at all.
*It’s parent-teacher conference time so the big kids get a FOUR DAY effing weekend. Yay.