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Monday, October 30, 2017

Hot and Sour Soup | Ghostbusters

Hot and Sour Soup | Ghostbusters
Hot and Sour Soup | Ghostbusters
I'm sneaking in last minute with a recipe inspired by this month's Food 'n Flix pick, the 2016 reboot of Ghostbusters! Okay, so I'm just gonna go ahead and put this out there...even though I feel like it's probably the unpopular opinion—I like the new Ghostbusters better than the original. I know there are some out there screaming sacrilege, especially since I grew up with the 1984 version, but the truth is, while I always liked it well enough, it never really clicked. I mean, I rollerskated to Ray Parker Jr.'s theme song like it was nobody's business, but the movie never really clicked (seemed like it was aimed more towards guys to me).

That said, I do consider it an 80's classic, and made sure all of my kids grew up with it, as well. And go figure, the boys like it more than my daughter. But it was my daughter and I that headed to theaters on opening day to see a team of badass ladies charging up their proton packs. I think the cast was amazing, with Kate McKinnon killing it as Holtzman, and Chris Hemsworth's hilarious portrayal of the sexy, but dumb as a box of rocks "secretary", Kevin.

Once again, the Ghostbusters team was made up of three scientists and one every(wo)man. Working together, the team saves New York from being taken over by an evil supernatural entity. Plus, the original Ghostbusters all made a cameo in the film—Dan Aykroyd as a conspiracy-theorist taxi driver, Bill Murray as a character out to debunk the Ghostbusters, Ernie Hudson as Patty's uncle, Annie Potts as a sassy hotel receptionist, Sigourney Weaver as Holtzman's mentor, and even the late Harold Ramis in the form of a bust.
Hot and Sour Soup | Ghostbusters
It may be subtle, but there is a fair amount of food inspiration found in the film as well. The Ghostbusters office is over a Chinese restaurant, of which Abby is a regular (disappointed) customer. There's classics like the StayPuft Marshmallow Man and Slimer (who still loves to eat). We see coffee, pizza, sandwiches, chips, and lots soup. There's scenes in a diner and a finer dining restaurant, and mention of Vienna Sausages. Plus, there are some outside the box things like "burnt bologna and regrets" and "flying beefcake".

I decided to go with the food mentioned most often, soup. There's an ongoing "soup crisis" in which Abby orders soup...wonton, hot and sour...from the Chinese restaurant, but always winds up with a container of broth with one or two things floating in it. That is, until they save the world and is presented with a container filled to the brim with wontons and a tiny amount of broth, when all she's really looking for is a "reasonable ration of wontons to broth".

Since Abby's Hot and Sour Soup only contained one shrimp and a water chestnut floating in broth, I think she'd be extremely happy if presented with a bowl of this silky, spicy and sour broth with a wonderful ratio of add-ins. I didn't have any shrimp or water chestnuts on hand, but either would be a delicious addition to this recipe (see recipe notes). But what I did find in my freezer, and include in my recipe, were mussels—my little nod to one of my favorite characters, Kevin (because of his sexy muscles...and that fish tank that had him so perplexed).

"There are so many wonderful things to live for out there."

"Like what?"

"Well, you got soup...."

Hot and Sour Soup | Ghostbusters
Food 'n Flix club logo
This month's edition of Food 'n Flix is being hosted by Kimberly at Coffee and Casseroles with her pick, Ghostbusters (2016); submissions are due October 30.

Join us next month as we head into the kitchen with our host Amy of Amy's Cooking Adventures with her pick, Planes, Trains, and Automobiles.

For inspiration, check out the Food 'n Flix website (click on any of the roundups listed to see what participants have been inspired to make by the movie choice), all of my past Food 'n Flix posts, or my Food 'n Flix Pinterest board!

Yield: serves 4-6
Hot and Sour Soup | Ghostbusters

Hot and Sour Soup

prep time: 30 MINScook time: 15 MINStotal time: 45 mins
Mussels and bok choy in a silky, spicy and sour broth. Also try variations with shrimp, tofu, pork, or water chestnuts.


  • 1 ounce dried Porcini (or other) mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and grated
  • 2 tablespoons sambal oelek (red chile paste)
  • 2 large Bok Choy leaves and stems, rinsed and cut into thin slices
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced + more to garnish
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • Pinch of brown sugar
  • 1 quart vegetable stock or broth
  • 8 ounces cooked mussel meats
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten


  1. Put the dried mushrooms in a small bowl and cover with 2 cups of boiling water. Let stand for 30-60 minutes to plump. Without disturbing the water, carefully lift the mushrooms out and set in a strainer; rinse and squeeze dry, then set aside. Line a medium-mesh strainer with a coffee filter, then pour the mushroom soaking water through it, into a clean bowl/cup (removes any grit). Set aside broth until needed.
  2. Heat the oil in a 4-quart pot (or wok) set over medium-high. Add the ginger, garlic, chile paste, reserved mushrooms, bok choy, and green onions; cook and stir for about 1 minute. Add vinegar, soy sauce, white pepper, and brown sugar to the pot.
  3. Add the vegetable stock and reserved mushroom broth. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the mussel meats and cook until they are just heated through, about 3 minutes longer.
  4. Dissolve the cornstarch in 1/4 cup of cold water and stir until you have a smooth slurry. Drizzle the slurry into the soup while stirring, and continue to simmer until the soup thickens a bit.
  5. Remove the soup from the heat and stir in 1 direction to form a "funnel" (like a whirlpool), then stop stirring. In a slow, steady stream, pour in the beaten egg; it with "feather" (and cook) in the hot broth as it spins.
  6. Garnish the soup with more sliced green onions to serve.


If you have them, add a brick of extra firm tofu, drained and diced and/or 8 ounces of peeled, deveined shrimp along with (or instead of) the mussels. Also try adding a can of drained water chestnuts, and some pulled barbecue pork to the recipe, if you like.

I haven't listed salt as an ingredient since the stock/broth and soy sauce both add some. You can taste and stir some in at the end, if you think it needs it.
Created using The Recipes Generator

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