If you're like me, you really love a well-made Hot and Sour Soup. In fact, the soup is my litmus test for whether or not I'll be coming back to a restaurant. Nothing is more disappointing than an insipid, lackluster, blah, hot and sour soup. You wonder if the chef even tasted it before bringing it out front. I like when you can feel the hotness coat the throat but it doesn't really burn, just gives you that great feeling of -- well, I don't know what to say, really, it's just wonderful. All flavors are so well-balanced that it's hard to pick them out. When it's blah, it's not only disappointing, it's insulting, and nothing more than meat and vegetables in water. Ptui!
Well, I wasn't trying for the end result, just playing around with what seasonings were on hand, and somehow managed to turn this puppy into an absolutely perfect rendition of a hot and sour soup. Yes! And, not for me, soups with little content. I like to make them into my main course, whenever possible, because I absolutely adore soups. And, yet, I'm not that crazy about stews. (Wonder what that's all about?!?)
Because I believe in working with my solar oven and not treating it as an adversary within my mainstream world, I have no problem giving foods a jump start. For the short time that you're using a stovetop, or the microwave, you're not burning that many BTUs. (It's when you go past twenty minutes of cooking that it really starts to add up.) And, if your stock pot is thick-sided, why not preheat it with some hot water, at the same time that everything is being done on the stovetop?
Hot and Sour Kielbasa Cabbage Soup
1/2 pound Polish Kielbasa, diced
1/4 green cabbage, chopped
3 large collard leaves, chopped
3 medium potatoes, diced
3 medium carrots, cross-sliced thin
1 medium onion, chopped
7 cups water
10oz chicken broth
2 T soy sauce
3 T apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp stevia (or 2 tsps sugar)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp basil
1 tsp parsley
Preheat solar oven to 225F. Use 6qt stock pot
1. On stovetop, bring water and broth to high simmer; add kielbasa and vegetables, return to high simmer, not a boil.
2. Add soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, stevia, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, basil and parsley. Stir to thoroughly blend. Cover
3. Place in solar oven and let cook for approximately 1.5 to 2 hours.
4. Remove from solar oven; serve with favorite crackers.
It's a Keeper Thursday
It's a Keeper Thursday