Hot and Sour Soup is quite popular in Chinese and American style of restaurants.
Soak 2 – 3 dried shiitake mushrooms for about 20 to 30 minutes in hot water until the dried mushrooms have reconstituted.
After the dried mushrooms have been reconstituted, squeeze the excess water out of the mushrooms, then cut the mushrooms into thin slices.
Mix 3 tablespoons of cornstarch with 1/2 a cup of water. Stir well till all cornstarch lumps are broken; mix well. This cornstarch makes the Hot and Sour Soup thick. We will add this portion to the soup later, so let us set it aside for now.
Bring 6 cups of chicken stock/vegetable stock to boil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 3 teaspoons of Healthy Fibres Gingelly Oil / Sesame oil, 1 teaspoon of dark soy sauce, and 1 tablespoon of brown sugar. Pour the sauce mixture into the pot of chicken stock / Vegetable stock.
Add the sliced shiitake mushrooms to the soup.
Add 3/4 cup of bamboo shoots (julienned; cut the bamboo shoot slices into thin strips).
Give the cornstarch mixture a good stir, then pour it into the soup. Stir the soup immediately to allow the cornstarch to thicken the soup evenly.
Add 2 teaspoons of Szechuan chili oil. If you like your Hot and Sour Soup spicy, you may also wish to add dried chili flakes.
If you want the soup to be less hot, you may omit the chili flakes from the recipe.
Lightly beat two eggs in a small bowl. Pour the beaten eggs into the soup in a slow, steady stream.
While pouring the eggs, use a pair of chopsticks to swirl the soup. Swirl quickly to get a thin, silky egg consistency, or swirl slowly to get a chunkier texture.
Next, add 1/2 a cup of diced tofu to the soup. You can use either silky or firm tofu based on your preference.
Add a few dashes of ground white pepper or black pepper.
Gently stir the soup to combine all the ingredients. Transfer the soup to a large serving bowl, or small individual bowls. Top with chopped scallions just before serving.