Friday, February 19, 2010

Shark's Fins Soup

This is a soup only served on special occasions.  Here's how I prepared the soup:

2 Dried Shark's Fins
2 Scallions
5 slices of ginger
1 pot of boiling water to prepare shark's fins
1 whole chicken
1 6 oz. pork
2 slices of Smoked Virginia Ham
1 pot of cold water to make chicken stock
4 Shiitake Mushrooms
2 Dried scallops
2 Slices of dried abalone
1 Tbsp of cooking wine


To prepare the shark fins:
  1. Add 2 slices of ginger and 2 scallions to a pot of boiled water.
  2. Place the dried shark's fins in and boil for 10 miniutes.
  3. Turn the heat off, cover and let it sit until next day.
  4. On the next morning, recook for 10 minutes and let it sit until needed.
  5. Discard the water and take care not to break the fins when transferred to the chicken stock to cook.
To make chicken stock:
  1. Remove the chicken skin and add the chicken into a pot of cold water, bring to a boil to clean out the raw juice from the chicken, then drain and discard the water and refill with fresh pot of clean water.
  2. Add in pork, ham, and 2 slices of ginger in the fresh pot of water with chicken.
  3. Let the chicken cook for 2 hours, discard the ingredients and preserve the soup and let it cool off  first before putting it in the refrigerator.
  4. Skim fat off before using it to cook with the shark's fins.
 To start making the shark fin soup:
  1. Bring the chicken stock to a boil.
  2. Add in ginger, shiitake mushrooms, dried scallops,wine, abalone and the soaked shark's fins.
  3. Turn on high heat to bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low or simmer, cover and cook for 5 hours. 
  4. Serve the soup individually in a small bowl with a red vinegar ginger sauce on the side.
  5. Salt is not needed as the ham, scallops and abalone were already preserved with salt.
Shark's fins are delicacies. When handle shark's fins, try not to break up the fins since it's supposed to serve with the fins still intact as much as possible.  People usually add in some red vinegar ginger sauce in the soup before eating.  It was not recommended to add the red vinegar so you could taste the original flavor of the soup.

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