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What You Should Know About Hot Pot Soup Stocks | 講解優質火鍋湯底

Hongkongers’ love towards hot pot never changes. It is an all-time favorite for many of us – we have hot pot regardless of season! While most people focus on the ingredients to be put in the pot, the importance of having a good soup stock should also be highlighted. But how do we choose a suitable soup base for our beloved hot pot?

香港人對火鍋可謂趨之若騖。我們對火鍋的愛戴突破了天氣——即使在炎炎夏日,我們仍然聚首一堂,一同享用各式其式的火鍋。談到火鍋,配料固然重要;但湯底的重要性亦不容忽視。究竟應讓如何為火鍋配備一個完美的湯底?

What is a good ‘soup stock’? 何謂好湯底?

Hot pot is basically cooking food at the dining table with boiling water or stock. As most of the ingredients are not marinated or flavoured in advance, the flavouring properties of a soup stock is vital. A good stock should enhance the flavours of the ingredient without hiding its freshness and characteristics. Meanwhile, soup stock also contributes to the nutritional value of the whole meal. Its essence, as well as nutrients, are absorbed by the food during the cooking process, and you can by no means escape from the fats and salt inside the stock simply by not consuming it! How can we strike a balance between sensational enjoyment and healthiness? Are they complementary? Let’s look into some of the popular choices.

火鍋是一種在席間以沸騰的湯或水(湯底)涮煮食物的煮食方式。由於多數的配料皆未經醃製, 故湯底在調味而言起了不可或缺的作用。一個優質的湯底,應該達至「既能提升食材本身味道,又不掩蓋其鮮味」的效果。與此同時,湯底的營養價值亦不容忽視。在烹調過程中,食物會吸收湯底的精華和營養——換言之,緃然我們只吃配料而不喝湯,我們仍然不能避開裡面的鹽份和脂肪!究竟如何在味覺享受和健康中作出平衡?兩者是否不能並存?讓我們研究一下幾款常用的湯底。

Rising Star – Chinese Spicy Stock 火鍋新貴—— 麻辣火鍋

What is better than having a hot and spicy stock for your hot pot on a freezing night? Sichuan-style spicy hot pot is a new rising star for hot pot lovers. The extreme spicy sensation introduces excitement to both our taste buds and our mind! Yet, for the sake of our physical health, a spicy hot pot may not be that exciting for our body… T he hotness and spiciness irritates the lining of your stomach and guts. This may eventually hurt the digestive system, and may increase the chance of getting associated cancer.  Having a spicy hot pot occasionally is fine, but it is best to not consume it frequently.

在嚴冬晚上,與三五知己享用麻辣火鍋實屬享受。四川麻辣火鍋確是不少火鍋愛好者的新寵。一份麻辣火鍋,不但為味蕾帶來享受,更會刺激我們其他感官。然而,於健康而言,我們的器官卻不太享受麻辣火鍋。麻辣火鍋𥚃的物質可能對腸冐的內部造成損害, 進而影響消化系統,增加患上相關癌症的機會。麻辣火鍋,以及其他麻辣食物,也許還是淺嚐為妙。

Pork Bone Stock 豬骨湯

A mild yet popular choice is pork bone stock. As its name suggests, the stock is cooked out of the thigh bone of pigs. Other vegetables, such as corns and carrots, are sometimes included as stock ingredients to provide sweetness and freshness.  Sounds pretty healthy and nutritious, right? Indeed, this is a good choice for homemade stock stocks, but it is best to avoid the premade versions. Premade pork bone stock is usually cooked in batches to maximise time and the essence of pork bones. For the sake of taste and preservation, ample amounts of salt and flavour-enhancing chemicals, such as MSG, are usually added to the premade stock. This may cause extra burden to our heart and kidney, and in the long term, harm our body as a whole. If you would like to try out this savoury soup, it’s better to opt for a DIY version.

若然受不了麻辣那強烈的味道,豬骨湯底亦是不少人的心水。顧名思義,豬骨湯是由豬大腿骨熬製而成的上湯。不少人亦會在調製時加入蘿蔔、粟米等蔬菜,突出上湯的鮮甜味道。此項看似健康而有營養的選擇,原來暗藏陷阱。誠然,自家製的豬骨湯的確美味又健康,但市面上預製的豬骨湯卻未必如此。預製豬骨湯多為大量生產,以取盡每一分的時間和精華。為求保鮮和調味,不少製造商和餐廳都會在製作過程中加入大量調味料,例如鹽和味精。長時間攝取過多調味料會加重心臟和腎藏的負擔,對身體造成傷害。若你想品嚐這道可口的濃湯,不妨趁假日親自下廚,為豐盛的火鍋錦上添花。

 

A healthy and special alternative – tomato stock 健康新選擇我——番茄湯底

Tomato stock is probably not a new thing to you – but have you ever tried this stock before? With tomato’s signature strong color and taste, some people tend to avoid tomato stocks in hot pot. Yet, it can actually intensify meaty flavours the most, and it is also one of the healthiest stocks you can get! Being rich in glutamic acid, tomatoes enhance the ‘yumminess’ (or umami) of your food! From a health perspective, tomatoes contains different carotenoids such as lycopene and beta-carotene, which bring about tremendous health benefits. For example, research has found that a tomato-rich diet is associated with lower risks of getting certain cancers and diseases. Meanwhile, other nutrients, antioxidants for instance, are also beneficial to our health.

相信各位讀者應該久仰番茄湯底的大名;但你又曾否在火鍋內一嚐番茄湯的韻味?番茄色香味俱濃,故不少食客均對其避之則吉。但是,番茄湯底不但可以提升肉類的鮮味; 而且更是其中一款最健康的湯底!番茄含有素有天然增味濟之稱的麩胺酸(glutamic acid,為胺基酸之一), 有助增加食物的鮮味。從健康角度而言,番茄有茄紅素、胡蘿蔔素等多種類胡蘿蔔素,對健康的百利而無一害。研究指出,食用適量的類胡蘿蔔素有助減低患上癌症的機會率。番茄內還有不同的營養素,如抗氧化劑;這些營養素亦對我們身體十分有益。

 

Conclusion 結語

Choosing a good soup stock can indeed lead you to a heavenly hot pot experience. However, apart from enhancing the flavours of your meal, soup stocks can also affect the nutritional values of your hot pot, or introduce potential health risks, even if you don’t consume it on its own! Our advice? Consider both flavours and your health when deciding your next soup stock.

一道優質湯底,確實可以為火鍋眼龍點睛。不過,湯底除了令配料更加入味外,更會影響火鍋的營養價值。就算不喝湯,不健康的湯底亦有機會帶來健康風險。大家在準備火鍋或選擇湯底時亦應考慮這些因素。

But choosing quality ingredients for you hot pot is equally important. Jou Sun’s vendors have a wide range of ingredients that are perfect for hot pots, ranging from freshly harvested organic veggies to traditional, locally-made fishballs and quality Wagyu beef and Iberico pork slices. With traceable, quality ingredients, you’ll get maximum flavours, textures, and peace of mind. Delivered for your convenience of course!
同樣地,上佳的配料同樣舉足輕重。《早晨》供應商提供多款優質火鍋配料,包括新鮮收割有機菜到傳統、本地製造魚蛋、優質和牛及本地黑毛豬片等食品。選購優質、可溯源食材,安心享受更好味,口感更佳的火鍋!貼心送貨服務,購買大量火鍋食材無煩惱!

 

Shop Jou Sun hot pot ingredients
選購《早晨》火鍋配料及心水食材 

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