2 cups of dried sliced shiitake mushrooms
1 cup shredded, dried wood ear fungus (optional)
1/2 cup dried lily buds (optional)
8 oz. vacuum-packed bamboo shoots, drained & julienned.
2 14-oz. pkgs. soft tofu, diced into 1" cubes.
14 oz. pork butt or country ribs, cut into thin strips
Marinade for pork:
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. sesame oil
1 tbsp. cornstarch
24 cups water
7 tbsp. Totole chicken base
1 tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. white pepper
1/4 cup of chopped cilantro & stems*
3 scallions, chopped
1/4 cup Chinese red vinegar
1/4 cup Rice vinegar
(or you can substitute both with 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
4 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tsp. sugar
1 tbsp. sesame oil
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup of reserved shiitake mushroom soaking liquid
(or 1 cup cornstarch + 1 1/2 cups liquid for a thicker soup)
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tbsp. white pepper
Extra chopped scallion and cilantro for garnish
1. Place the Shiitakes, shredded wood ear fungus and lily buds in 3 separate bowls and cover with hot tap water. Let soak at least 30 minutes or until they are reconstituted. Cut off any stems on the shiitakes and the tough ends of the lily buds after they are softened. Reserve the mushroom soaking liquid.
2. In the meantime, slice pork into thin strips and mix well with marinade ingredients in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
3. Dice tofu, julienne bamboo shoots, chop cilantro & scallion, and set aside.
3. In a large stock pot, bring 24 cups of water plus 7 tbsp. of Totole chicken base (or just substitute with low sodium canned chicken broth of the same quantity) and 1 tbsp. kosher salt. Add 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro (mostly stems), 3 chopped scallions, 1 tsp. sesame oil, and 1 tsp. white pepper. Bring to a boil.
4. Add diced tofu, shiitakes, wood ear, lily buds, and bamboo. Bring soup up to a boil, then reduce heat & simmer 10 minutes.
5. Stir in pork and cook about 5-10 minutes. Bring soup back up to a boil and add beaten egg, stirring constantly. Stir in the vinegar-soy seasoning and up to an additional 1 tbsp. white pepper (according to your taste). Stir in cornstarch slurry and boil until soup is thickened.
6. Pour soup into serving bowls and garnish with cilantro & scallion. Serve red vinegar, white pepper and sesame oil on the side, in case anyone wants to add more of these.
Add the pork to the soup and cook 5-10 minutes.