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Good fortunes and some really great dishes

So, as most all of my readers know by now, I am expecting. Everything you’ll read for the next six and a half months will probably be craving driven.

My family and I were at my mom’s and we went to a great Chinese restaurant in Hoover. I haven’t had great luck with all food lately but my fortune was good with this soup.

The hot and sour soup with those little crispy fried noodles was great, so when I got home I had to look it up.

I took several versions and added bits and pieces together to get as close as I could to that wonderful soup and came up with this.

Maybe it will make you feel as good as it made me feel!

Hot and Sour Soup

5 cups chicken stock

1 tbs soy sauce

8 ounces of tofu, cut into thin strips or small cubes

6 button mushrooms sliced

2 baby bok choy thinly sliced

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 and a half chicken breast cut into thin strips

2 tbs corn starch mixed with one-fourth cup chicken stock to make a paste

1 tbs sesame oil

3 tbs rice vinegar

half tsp chili paste or cracked black pepper if you can’t find the chili paste

2 thinly slivered scallions (green and white parts)

half cup fresh cilantro leaves, thinly chopped

In a large pot bring the chicken stock to a boil. Add the soy sauce and simmer for five minutes. A add the tofu, mushrooms, and bok choy.

Slowly add the beaten egg while gently stirring the soup so you don’t have scrambled eggs in your soup. Put in your chicken, then cover and cook for about five to seven minutes. In a small bowl, stir in half a cup hot stock with the cornstarch to make the paste. Add this to the soup and cook for another two minutes. Stir in the sesame oil, vinegar, and cilantro, serve immediately. This is great served with some egg rolls and rice or as a side dish to the Asian dish I did two weeks ago. I hope you enjoy this soup, I find it very comforting to my delicate tummy these days.

Until next time, have fun in the kitchen, experiment and indulge your cravings.

Laura Clements is the pastry chef at Napoleon’s.