Hot Pot is a traditional chinese concept in which a boiling bowl of stock is placed in the middle of the dinner table. The pot is kept simmering and guests around the table place raw meat or vegetables into the pot. The ingredients cook quickly and enjoyed by the diners.
It’s a unique experience that J and I have been able to partake it at a few restaurants, but our favorite was in Hawaii. J actually went to the restaurant while I stayed behind and caught some rays (can you blame me?), and enjoyed it so much that he brought me with him a couple days later. Just like Poke, we enjoyed it so much that I was determined to bring the hot pot soup home with me. I might not have a setup to keep a large bowl boiling in the middle of the dining table, but I’ve been able to adapt the recipe to a bowl of soup. With the cooling temperatures, it’s a cozy meal.
I love the flexibility I have with this soup. The base is pretty simple and I add whatever is available at home to the broth. I try to always put some sort of starch (noodles, udon, or rice cakes), protein (thin shredded beef, chicken, or tofu), hearty vegetables (cabbage, bok choy, even kale). If you like eggs, add one towards the end of the cooking process. A soft yolk makes an awesome addition to gulps of hot, spicy, broth.
Hot pot soup at home
(makes 4 servings)
1 1/2 quarts water
1/4 cup kimchi paste
1 1/2 tbs Bouillon chicken stock
3 chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch strips
1 medium sized bok choy, sliced into 3 inch slices
3 leaves kale, sliced into 3 inch slices
1 cup shredded carrots
1 jalepano pepper, thinly sliced
6 ounces noodles
2 eggs, if desired
In a large pot, add water, kimchi paste and chicken stock. Bring liquid to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat so that broth is simmering and add vegetables and meat. Cook until ingredients are cooked, about 5 minutes. Add noodles and cook based on package directions. With approximately 2 minutes to go until the noodles are ready, add eggs if desired. When noodles are cooked, Serve and Enjoy!