Prepping for an impromptu F1 Sunday hotpot: A good soup stock

Have you ever ponder over what to eat and got absolutely no clue? Hours goes by and its almost dinner and yet still indecisive? I hate it when this happens which always end up having whatever is convenient. I am that kind of person that wakes up dreaming about food, thinking about what I feel like eating for the day, tomorrow or for the week. I only get 3 meals a day so non shall go to waste. Planning is important too because there's a capacity limit on my stomach to how much food I can savor. Calculations like big dinner equates to the other 2 meals being small and so forth.

I was planning Sunday on Saturday. It usually starts like a word game, connoting through keywords of food and cuisine, sensing for the right word to pop. The word hotpot popped. I can see images of shaved marbled beef, juicy thin, withering into the steamy hot concentration of stock, quickly turning a muted shade of pink. My favorite tang hao vegetable (chrysanthemum greens) lacing with the delectable complex favors of home made white broth. "Shall we have hotpot tomorrow night?" I shyly blurbed. What better way to spend the Sunday evening home over a lascivious hotpot watching the F1 finals with chill white wines.

Waking up earlier than usual, excited about the morning trip to the wet market. Out as quickly as possible with my good old shopping bag ready for some visual feast. Wet market in Singapore shuts and sold out by noon therefore the earlier you go the better fresher stuff you can get. Pinching, touching and smelling the galore of vegetables and fresh Asian herbs. Learning the difference about local and imported vegetables. Stall venders teaching me the know-hows on varieties of salt water fishes and best way to cook it. All so new and amusing. There are so many things to do and see.
A sensational hotpot calls for a good soup base and fresh ingredients. Now with all the fresh food loaded up, Shabu shabu pork belly and beef strips and chips from Coldstorage. Easy peasy. Up next is the soup stock. A white pork stock is easy to make and can be made in advance. My stash is 2 weeks old. I usually make a big pot of stock using just bones, fiercely boiled till it turn white extracting all the goodness to the soup. I do not season at this stage. The basic stock is a base to be layered upon with recipes. The stock are all portioned in ziplock bags flat stack freeze ready to be used for any impromptu soiree like tonight made proud with sweet white radishes and carrots. Hotpot ready in a brisk. Wahla! Let's start dipping!

- till next post, ss.

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