My weeks have been a blur recently, and I can’t believe it is already September. Where did my summer go? Crisp fall weather strolling in; almost time for hot beverages other than morning coffee.
I barely remember any foods that I’ve eaten except for a few dishes that I either just had — homemade Taiwanese dumplings with Lee and Sharon — or delicious homemade hotpots with Lee and Sharon. Apparently, my most memorable food adventures are will Lee and Sharon.
Hotpots – soo yummy
Pho (one of Jake’s favorite Vietnamese soups)
and of course, lots and lots of different seafood
such as our 4 lb lobster
and clam chowder and dumplings not pictured.
I was in the mood for a healthy bowl of Asian noodles with vegetables and seafood so I decided to make a Korean inspired spicy miso hot pot. To prepare the broth, I sauteed 3 slices of ginger, 1 tbsp chopped garlic, 1 sliced onion, and 3 red chilies in a tsp of olive oil until the onions were translucent, and then I added water and 2 chicken bouillon cubes. I added 2 tbsp soybean paste (Doenjang), 2 tbsp red pepper paste (Gochujang), and 1 tbsp red pepper flakes (Gochugaru) to three different tea bags and soaked them in the broth. The soybean paste and pepper flakes can contain large particulates so I used tea bags to keep them out of the broth.
I also added some rehydrated shitake mushrooms to the broth to add more flavor and let the broth come to a boil, followed by a nice simmer. I removed the tea bags after most of the soybean and red pepper paste had dissolved and then seasoned the broth with fish sauce (~3 tbsp) to taste. Yum!
In the meantime, I boiled some rice vermicelli noodles and prepared the vegetables and seafood. For the vegetables, I used chopped napa cabbage and 4 different types of fresh mushrooms: enoki, brown beech, maitake, and button. I love mushrooms in hot pots because they absorb the flavor of the broth and are just delicious.
For the seafood, I used precooked frozen mussels and clams, uncooked shrimp, and an assorted mix of fish balls. Th fish balls were a little too sweet for my taste so I’ll probably leave them out next time.
I didn’t have a special hot pot cookware so I just used a backpacking burner, which I don’t recommend using and would not do again. Open flames and little stability are not ideal for cooking a hot pot.
To those unfamiliar with hot pots, each person adds what they want to eat to the pot and then fishes it out themselves in a very communal way. I shared with Jake and Rob, and our hot pot ended looking great. Doesn’t it look delicious?