With the winter months approaching, I've been craving some Japanese hot pot style action (mmmm udon soup...). I was wondering you any of you guys have had success in developing a healthier/not noodle based hot pot style broth/mixture that was successful as a recipe. I'm going to try experimenting this weekend. Any recommendations?
Can you use rice, instead?
The key to a japanese style soup or vietnamese pho is the broth (stock). In my opinion the stock has to be made ahead of time. Strained. Refrigerated. The next day heat it up again, load it up with vegetables: minced garlic, minced ginger, chopped scallions/green onion, chili paste, other vegetables (snow peas/chopped carrots/chopped pepper), bring it to a boil to barely cook the vegetables. Then add whatever you want as protein (scallops or chopped chicken breast or thinly sliced raw beef/tripe). Bring to back to a boil and cook until the meat is just cooked through. Eat up.
That's the basic process. The key, like I said before, is the stock. Making a good stock is not easy, but is easier if you have a pressure cooker. Here's a link to a good pressure cooker beef stock recipe.
If you don't have the patience to learn to cook, just buy some "Better Than Boullion" soup base. There's nine kinds ranging from beef to lobster.
Better than anything you can find in a can, but not as good as a homemade stock and not as healthy.
Ultimately, I recommend you learn to make stock. Women prefer homemade soup to 3 for $1 ramen noodles any day.
Zdrax, I personally have my hot pot vegetable and mushroom based instead of tofu based. In terms of noodles, I do have a little bit just to keep the traditional feeling. Just watch your udon intake as you usually do with your carb intake, depending your fitness goal.
In terms of making the broth, I stick with beef and cow bones. There are some part that are more suitable for making the stock, go check it out with the butchery.
In terms of what you have in the hot pot, beef in the king. Pork is also good as well as seafood like mussels.