Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Imitation Shark's Fin Soup 碗仔翅


Abalone, sea cucumber, shark's fin and fish maw are the four supreme delicacies of Chinese cuisine. No banquet is complete without at least one of the four. If all are served, it usually symbolizes how greatly the guests are honored by the host (or how wealthy the host is).

All four delicacies are seafood that have been carefully preserved by drying. They can be kept for a very long time and each of them requires a special method to prepare. Without proper preparation, it will be a waste of money. This is the main reason most people would rather enjoy it in restaurants than doing it at home and risking a mistake during the cooking process.

It has been over a year that shark's fin has been banned in California. But I find the imitation version of it is texturally very close to the real thing. It is consists of gelatin and resembles vermicelli (bean threads). Both the imitation and the real fin are tasteless. The soup gets its flavor mainly from other ingredients and the stock. It is a great alternative to the real fin and good for preserving marine ecosystems as well!



鲍參翅肚一直是中菜的四大天皇,任何喜慶筵席都少不了它們, 能夠用它們其中之一來款待客人是代表主人對客人的尊重,如果席上有齊四種就更具體面 (更顯主人家之富豪氣派!)

這些海產都是經過特别方法風乾處理,可以長期保存,但烹調方法特別及需長時間,不是一般家庭能夠升任,通常都是到酒家品嚐為上。

加州已經立例禁止售賣魚翅有一年了,所以在新年這些喜慶日子,只好食仿翅了吧。其實仿翅的口感與魚翅是很接近,它是用無味的魚膠粉做,看上去與粉絲相似。但魚翅與仿翅兩者本身都是沒有味道,全靠其他配料及上湯入味的,所以無真魚翅也不妨,又可以環保啊!

Ingredients 材料:
1 bag/1 lb imitation shark's fin 一磅仿翅
8-10 cups chicken stock 八至十杯鷄湯
6 black mushrooms, soaked, shredded 四隻冬菇,切絲
1/2 cup black fungus, soaked, shredded 半杯木耳絲
1/2 cup bamboo shoot,shredded 半杯竹筍,切絲
1 chicken thigh meat, shredded  鷄腿肉,切絲
6 tbsp potato starch mix in 1/2 cup of water 六湯匙薯粉加半杯水
salt and pepper to taste 鹽及胡椒粉適量
2 tbsp sesame oil 二湯匙麻油
2 tbsp dark soy sauce 二湯匙老抽


1)  Defrost the imitation fin. Blanch with a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain.


2)  Shred all the other ingredients. Marinate the meat with salt, sugar, oil and cornstarch.
3)  Bring the chicken stock to a boil in a large pot and add the meat, mushroom, black fungus and bamboo shoot. Let it boil for five minutes.
4)  Add the potato starch mixture while simultaneously stirring the soup.
5) Add the shark's fin. Adjust the flavor with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and add sesame oil. Serve warm.

Note:
1)  Adjust the amount of potato starch for your desired consistency of the soup.
2)  Add dark soy sauce if you prefer to have darker color.
3) Other type of meat can substitute chicken thigh.


先將仿翅解凍,然後放滾水出水約半分鐘,隔水盛起。其他材料切絲,鷄肉用鹽、糖、油及玉米粉稍醃一會。用大鍋燒滾鷄湯,將鷄肉、冬菇絲、木耳絲、竹筍絲放入,煑約五分鐘,試味,再加入薯粉水調教成羮,邊加要邊攪。最後加入仿翅,熄火加入麻油便成。

注意事項:
1)  可自行用薯粉水去調教湯的濃度。
2)  若要深一點的色澤可加少許老抽。
3)  用其他肉代替雞肉也可。





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