Steamboat: More fun than fondue! This Chinese meal is a perfect dinner when you're in a hurry because most of the cooking is done at the table
By Linda Gassenheimer
I found that it's also a perfect dinner when you're in a hurry because most of the cooking is done at the table. The vegetables and meat are dipped into chicken stock to cook and then dipped into a savory sauce. To finish the meal, the hearty broth is poured into soup bowls with the dipping sauce and eaten like soup.
To serve this dish in the Chinese manner, you will need a fondue pot with a burner or a sauce pan placed on a portable electric or gas burner. An electric frying pan or wok would also work.
Failing that, you can still enjoy this meal using the alternate directions below.
This meal contains a total of 569 calories per serving with 15 percent of calories from fat.
• Fresh Chinese noodles can be found in the produce department of most supermarkets. Dried Chinese noodles can be used.
• Buy sliced carrots in the produce section.
• A quick way to chop ginger is to peel it, cut it into small pieces and press through a garlic press with large holes.
• Start chicken broth first.
• Prepare the rest of the ingredients.
• To buy: 32 ounces fat-free, low-salt chicken broth, 1 package sliced carrots, 1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, 1/4 pound Chinese or Napa cabbage, 1/4 pound mushrooms, 1/4 pound fresh or dried Chinese noodles, 1 small bunch scallions, 1 small piece fresh ginger
• Staples: Onion, sesame oil, low-salt soy sauce and brown sugar.
Meanwhile, remove fat from chicken and cut i
To cook: Place heating unit on heat-proof mat on table. Pour boiling broth into fondue pot or electric pan and place on table; the broth should continue to gently simmer. Using chopsticks or fork, each diner adds chicken, cabbage and mushrooms to the pot, removing them when they are cooked (about one minute). (Note: use separate forks for raw chicken to eliminate any chance of salmonella contamination.) Remove pieces as they are cooked, dip them in sauce and eat them. When the platter is nearly empty, add noodles and remaining vegetables to pot and cook about 5 minutes, until noodles are cooked through. Ladle into bowls with remaining dipping sauce and eat as soup. Makes 2 servings.
Alternate directions: In a saucepan, bring the broth to a boil and add the carrots and onions. Simmer 10 minutes. Prepare all other ingredients. Add noodles and remaining vegetables to broth. Cook 3 to 4 minutes. Add chicken and cook about 3 minutes. Divide the dipping sauce into two large soup bowls and pour the soup over it.
Per serving: 569 calories (15 percent from fat), 9.6 g fat (1.9 g saturated, 2.9 g monounsaturated), 178 mg cholesterol, 57.1 g protein, 66.7 g carbohydrates, 7.2 g fiber, 1989 mg sodium.
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((Linda Gassenheimer is the author of more than 20 cookbooks including her newest, "Fast and Flavorful-Great Diabetes Meals from Market to Table" and "The Flavors of the Florida Keys.")