Saturday, January 8, 2011

Hot Pot Soup!

So Curt and I decided to go hard core paleo - no cheats- this year.  To start us off on the right foot, I decided to make a nice warm meal.  With the weather being so cold, I thought a big pot of soup would be good!  I was flipping through some magazines and found a recipe that I put my own Paleo spin on.  The original recipe called for noodles and a few other no no items, so I nixed those.

Here we have:

Hot Pot Soup

* 1 lb ribeye
* 1 lb shrimp
* 1/2 cup sliced shitake mushrooms
* 1/2 head napa cabbage
* 1/2 lb of sugar snap peas
* 6 cups of beef broth
* 2 tbs sesame oil
* 3 tbs chili garlic paste (more if you like it spicy)
* 2 tsp minced fresh ginger
* 3 tbs soy sauce

This recipe is super easy!  First, in a large stockpot, I added in some of the oil and the ginger.  I let the ginger cook a bit and soften up.  I'm not a huge ginger fan, so I left mine as 1 big hunk and fished it out of the soup at the end.  I just wanted a bit of the ginger flavor sothat I can gradually get used to the taste and eventually grow to like it (it's how I started liking onions!)  

Once the ginger had softened a bit, I added in the chili garlic sauce, the shitake mushrooms, and a little swirl of sesame oil.  Definitely make sure that you add in the sesame oil because it really gives everything a nice Asian-y toasty flavor!  Once all of that was mixed together, I added in the chicken stock and the soy sauce and let everything come to a nice simmer.

Next, I added in the sliced napa cabbage and the sugar snap peas.  The original recipe didn't call for the sugar snap peas, but I wanted to add them in to give the soup something extra since I was taking the noodles out.  They only took a few minutes to cook through.

While I was letting the cabbage and snow peas cook, I sliced the ribeye thinly against the grain.  You want to slice it against the grain so that when you eat a bite, it's easy to eat and it isn't chewy.  Anyway, when the steak is sliced thinly, it doesn't take long to cook at all.  Shrimp, of course, doesn't take long to cook.  You just want to stir everything around until the shrimp are opaque and the ribeye is cooked.  I also added in a lobster tail because it was on sale at Whole Foods, and the seafood guy gave me an extra discount :)


So here's the hot pot soup!  It was pretty darn good.  I'm used to having soup with pasta or rice or potatoes in it, but this was totally paleo and totally delicious.  The best part about this recipe is that it's totally flexible!  You could put in fish and shrimp and calamari and make it a seafood soup.  You could put in chicken or pork or steak; or you could just throw in a ton of veggies like carrots and celery and have a lighter appetizer type of soup.  I didn't even really miss the fact that there were supposed to be noodles in it!

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