"The best flavor comes at the end when everything has been cooking together."
Prep time: 240 minutes
Total time: 250 minutes
for the stock:
3 lb chicken (vegetables can be used instead for a vegetarian broth) 2 onions, diced 4 1/4 quarts of
water 2-3 carrots, sliced 1-2 whole celeriac, sliced 1 bunch of parsley 3-4 sprigs of thyme, to garnish 2-3 bay leaves 12 peppercorns, crushed lime, salt, pepper, and lime leaves (optional)
for the hot pot: 3-4 whole garlic cloves 2-3 ginger bulbs, diced 2-3 lemongrass stems, broken up 1 tablespoon tamarind paste 1-2 fresh chilies 1 tablespoon fish sauce (omit for vegetarian version) 2 tablespoons brown sugar stock (see ingredients above)
for serving: your favorite meat, seafood, vegetables, egg, noodles, and dumplings
This is my most favorite recipe after a night out of heavy drinking. You will need a hot pot—you can find one in any Asian supermarket. You can also substitute an induction plate. 1. For the stock, in a large pot over medium heat, add a small amount of oil and fry the chicken and onion until aromatic. Onion should be translucent. Add all other ingredients, finishing with water. Simmer for at least 3 hours over medium low heat. (When done, you can remove the chicken and eat it as a snack with a crushed-up mixture made of lime, salt, pepper, and lime leaves. Drink it with a beer and thank me later.)
2. For the hot pot, in a large pot, fry garlic cloves, ginger, lemongrass, tamarind paste, chilies, fish sauce, brown sugar. When hot and aromatic, add the chicken stock. Simmer for half an hour. While the hot pot is simmering, cut up all of the ingredients that you want to add into your hot pot into bite-size pieces.
3. When the hot pot broth has finished simmering, remove spices. Move broth to the table and place into hot pot or place pot over induction burner. Bring to a boil once, then reduce heat. Add your desired hot pot ingredients and use little sieves (you can find them in Asian supermarkets) to fish for the food. Enjoy!
When you're ready to serve, add your favorite types of meat and seafood: chicken breast, beef, veal, whole shrimp (leave the head and tail on to add flavor), fish balls, etc. For a vegetarian version, try shiitake and enoki mushrooms, bok choy, Thai spinach, herbs, egg, and rice noodles. Feel free to add any other meats, vegetables, noodles, or dumplings that you like! The more ingredients you add, and the longer they are being simmered, the more aromatic your hot pot gets.