Friday, December 7, 2007

Mm-mm Good: Egg Drop Soup

In college, when money seemed trivial and our appetites were never-ending, my roommates and I ate a LOT of Chinese food. We’d file into the Main Street restaurant, place our orders with the brilliant 10-year-old girl behind the counter (definitely a future Nobel Laureate), and settle down for heaping mounds of Sesame Chicken and Fried Rice. In retrospect, I’m not sure how our metabolisms kept up. Maybe they didn’t. Maybe that’s why my butt reached epic proportions after graduation.

Nowadays, ordering Chinese food is a different ball of wax for me. It’s one of the rare takeout experiences during which I can score giant containers of healthy eats for a few bucks. Steamed vegetables and meats, brown rice, a wide array of soups and sauces – places like Wo Hop and Dah Lee have it all, and the food’s made right there, to boot. Bonus.

Yet! Yet. I’ve found there are a few dishes that can be duplicated at home for less money. In the case of this All Recipes Egg Drop Soup, it saves about ten cents a pint off the cost. That doesn’t sound like much, but consider:

-You don’t have to tip a delivery man.
-It takes less time than ten minutes.
-All the ingredients are guaranteed fresh.
-You can alter it to your liking.
-There’s less waste.
-Taste-wise, it’s comparable to any restaurant.

Not bad for what looks like a pot of water and eggs, huh? I suggest pairing it with Light Chinese Chicken and Broccoli for a grand ol’ time.

AllRecipes graciously calculated the fat and calories, so only the price is added below. I should add that this isn't my picture. I forgot to take one (duh), so this is from Flickr.

Egg Drop Soup
4 servings, about 1 cup each
Adapted from All Recipes.

4 cups chicken broth, divided
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or scallions
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 eggs
1 egg yolk

1) In large saucepan, combine 3-1/4 cups chicken broth, salt, ginger, and chives. Bring to a boil.

2) In a small bowl, combine remaining broth and cornstarch. Set aside.

2) In a different small bowl, whisk eggs and yolk together. Very slowly, drizzle egg into boiling broth. (It will cook instantaneously.) When all the egg is gone, slowly whisk in the cornstarch mixture, until the soup hits your preferred consistency. Serve hot.

Approximate Calories, Fat, and Price per Serving
94 calories, 5.8 g fat, $0.45

4 cups chicken broth: $0.92
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger: $0.01
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives (I used green onions): $0.35
1/4 teaspoon salt: $0.01
1-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch: $0.03
2 eggs: $0.34
1 egg yolk: $0.16
TOTAL: $1.82

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nw said...

Mmm! I made this for lunch today. It was so fast and tasted very close to the restaurant kind. Love your blog by the way! I haven't tried a recipe I didn't like yet!

Ginger said...

It is really hot, 105*. But that didn't stop me from trying this out. Very easy, Very good! I made it as is but used arrowroot to thicken instead of cornstarch. I think this tasted better then getting it from a Chinese restaurant and made a terrific lunch. Thank you once again for sharing so many great recipes.

Anonymous said...

This looks delicious but most college student's money isn't trivial ;)

Mabel Day said...

Sounds good will try it. Does any one have the receipt for the sweet and sour Chinese soup?

Ella said...

I made this tonight and it's wonderful. So easy and fast to make. I did not use ginger nor cornstarch, though, but I used everything else. I just could not get the egg to drop in thin strands. My egg in the soup looked like scrambled I broke it up with a fork.

Denise4SanDiego said...

Doubled the recipe and the grandkids said it was better than any the've had at any restaurant!