Friday, September 6, 2013

Spicy Sour Salmon Soup

It's been raining here, and (dare I say it?) starting to feel a bit like fall. Hence, soup. This recipe has been a staple in my family since I was a kid; I'm pretty sure my mom invented it (and its alliterative name). It is, as advertised, spicy and sour, lemony and garlicky and delicious. Also it's a quick and easy soup to make. This works best with a nice fresh piece of salmon that holds its texture well.

Makes approximately 8 servings


2-3 quarts vegetable stock
1 good-sized salmon fillet (1-2 pounds is a good amount)
Juice of 1 large lemon
6 cloves garlic
1 thumb-sized piece of ginger
soy sauce (optional)
hot chili sauce or chili oil
green onions or cilantro (optional)

1. Peel and dice the garlic and ginger. Slice the salmon from the skin (keep the skin to one side) and cut into 1/2 inch cubes, removing any bones.
2. Heat the stock in a large soup pot with the salmon skin, garlic and ginger, and soy sauce and chili oil to taste. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15-20 minutes to build the flavor.

3. Use tongs to remove the salmon skin and discard.
4. Add the cubes of salmon and lemon juice. Simmer for 3 minutes, just until the pieces of salmon turn opaque. Salt to taste and remove from heat.

5. Ladle into bowls, top with green onions or cilantro as a garnish, and enjoy!

This soup is also very tasty with rice or noodles added to it. I prefer it served with rice and greens on the side. I like to get the soup spicy enough that my face starts to sweat a little while I eat it, without my mouth being totally on fire. Whatever your tolerance for spiciness, you should feel thoroughly warmed after having this for dinner!

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