Sunday, February 21

Beef noodle soup

I have a bunch of stuff I want to post but in honour of Chinese New Year I'll star with a recipe I've recently been working on perfecting. There's a Chinese restaurant here in San Antonio (Gin) that does the most awesome beef noodle soup! We have been back to try it over and over again and I think I'm finally close enough to a version that I am at least satisfied with. For the sake of transparency, this recipe is also derived from two Gourmet magazine recipes found here and here (God bless you Gourmet...I miss you so).

In a heavy based soup pot or dutch oven combine 6 cups of water, half a cup of soy sauce, half a cup of sweet sherry and a tablespoon or two of sugar and bring to a low boil. Then add the following...


Sliced ginger (about 3-4cm of a root), 3 garlic cloves sliced, 3-4 spring onions, 3 whole star anise, a cinnamon stick, a few pinches (~1tsp) of five spice and some red pepper flakes. Also add 8 to 10 of those big, fat, dried shiitake mushrooms.


Allow the spice mix to infuse at a low boil for about ten minutes then add about 2 pounds (1kg) of boneless beef short ribs (on the bone is also fine but add a few more).

(sorry vegetarians)

Don't don't chop the meat up at this point. Marbling is good but trim off any large fatty bits on the outsides.


Add the meat and put the lid on, letting the whole thing sit at a low boil/high simmer for two and a half to three hours or until the meat is very soft but not falling apart. Don't have the boil so hard that it shreds everything up and clouds the broth with too much protein. When the meat is done, take it off the heat and allow the meat to cool in the broth for at least an hour but preferably overnight in the fridge.

About half an hour before you're ready to serve, skim off any fat, strain the whole thing (keep the broth!! Dear heavens it is all lost if you throw out the broth!!) Allow the broth to settle and while that is happening rescue the short ribs and the shiitakes from the mess of stewed aromatics. Strip any obvious membranes and or stringy bits from the short ribs and cut the meat into roughly 1 inch cubes. Cut the shiitakes into thick strips. Gently pour the broth back into your soup pan leaving most of the sediment behind (some is good for flavour but not too much), add the meat and mushrooms and bring back to a simmer. At this point you'll probably want to dilute out the broth with either water or chicken stock, depending on how strong the final poaching liquid turned out.

Meanwhile you need to prepare the greens for the soup - Chinese cabbage (wombok) cut into strips and sugar snap peas works well. Also cook some noodles. For this soup wheat based noodles are better than rice so I used a pack of Japanese dried somen noodles. When the noodles are ready, add the greens to the soup until the are just wilted. Serve the soup over the noodles, adding some toasted sesame oil, fresh coriander leaf, sliced spring onion and red pepper flakes at the end.

Enjoy!

9 comments:

Penny said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Adrienne said...

Oooh! That looks fantastic. I think I'll do it for dinner tomorrow night.

Big A said...

A deleted post???

Did the expressions of amazement contain too many expletives? It looks b----y good to me.

Jac said...

Pen - hehe I won't tell.

Rennie - wow, that's high praise indeed! No doubt you'll make an even tastier version.

Big A - I didn't delete it! I only delete spam, and even then only when I can be bothered. You guys could make this - I'm sure Alan would fix you up with some suitable bovine bits.

Mothersupex said...

It reads fantastically, especially as I have been to the dentist today and he said only soups for 2 days. Wonder if he has seen your soups.

The digestive juices are telling me they want some.

Mothersupex said...

It reads fantastically, especially as I have been to the dentist today and he said only soups for 2 days. Wonder if he has seen your soups.

The digestive juices are telling me they want some.

Mothersupex said...

Sorry about 2 comments but they said my word verification was not correct so out comes the wheel chair. I love that. Sorry again, really only 1 comment

Vikki said...

Everything you make looks amazing and delicious. I wish I lived down the street and could invite myself over for dinner all the time. I'd bring wine or beer or peeps :)

Adrienne said...

I've decided that I'm making it for my mummy on Saturday night. I'll let you now how it goes!

xA