Over the holidays, I made chicken soup. It’s much more difficult to make than dashi, so I did not want to forget about it! Of course chicken soup is not exclusive to Jewish cuisine. Ms. Shimbo was inspired by Chinese mushroom soups to include this recipe in her book. Best quality dried shiitake mushrooms are soaked and then steamed in chicken stock for an hour. The mushrooms become juicy and chewy, adding a nice flavor to the soup.
To be honest, after I made the dinner, I was too tired to eat. Mr. Tess enjoyed the food, though I think I’ll cut the mushrooms to make them easier to eat at work; the mushrooms are huge! Edited to say that this soup is really delicious!
Dried Siitake Mushroom Soup
Hoshi Shiitake Sûpu
- 8 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in cool water for 30 minutes
- 2 cups chicken stock, homemade
- 1/4 cup sake
- Salt to taste
- Ground white pepper to taste
- 2 large chicken thighs, hacked into 2 ” pieces
- 2 scallions, green part only cut into thin rings
Drain the mushrooms, and reserve 1 cup of the soaking liquid. (The mushrooms float so soak them in a bowl, covered with a soup plate to hold them under water.)
Cut off the stems. The stems are tough to chew even after soaking!
Slice the mushrooms into spoon-sized pieces.
Strain the mushroom liquid through a fine cloth.
Strain the chicken stock, discarding the bones, skins, etc.
In a wide, moderately deep heat-proof bowl, combine the 2 cups chicken stock with 1 cup of the reserved mushroom water. Add the sake, mushroom caps, and if you are using them, the chicken thighs. Cover with plastic wrap and place into your steamer. Steam over medium-high heat for 1 hour. Check the water level in the steamer and add water as necessary.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve hot in individual bowls sprinkled with the green onion rings.
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