The Sizzling Rice Soup is comprised of a light broth with veggies, chicken or shrimp, and crispy rice. The sound of the rice sizzling and crackling when it is poured into the soup is certain to impress your guests. Now you can prepare this popular Chinese restaurant dish at home!
I had never heard of Sizzling Rice Soup until I immigrated to the United States from Malaysia. According to my understanding, this soup originated in Taiwan but has grown wildly famous in Chinese restaurants in the United States.
The soup is typically served in a big bowl, family style. As the crispy rice is poured directly at the dinner table into the soup, it begins to sizzle and snap.
The extremely light broth in Sizzling Rice Soup allows the exquisite toasted tastes of the crispy rice to show. This gives the soup an incredible flavor and texture.
Since moving back to Malaysia, I’ve had to learn how to prepare it at home, as it remains unpopular even among Chinese restaurants.
How to Make Sizzling Rice Soup
There are three parts to making Sizzling Rice Soup:
- Baking the cooked rice to dry it
- Preparing the soup
- Deep-frying the rice to make crispy rice puffs
Preparing the Rice For Sizzling Rice Soup
There are several methods for preparing and serving sizzling rice. The crispy rice is either packaged and sliced into squares (similar to rice crispy snacks) or served loose.
Square Crispy Rice Cakes
Pour 1 cup of cooked rice onto a baking sheet, and then use a spatula to spread and compact the rice to a thickness of no more than 1/2 an inch.
Bake at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour, or until dry. Allow the rice to cool to room temperature before slicing it into 2-inch squares. Just before serving the soup, deep-fry the squares until they are puffy and faintly browned.
These pre-made rice crackers are convenient because baking is unnecessary. You only need to deep-fry them immediately before serving.
Loose Crispy Rice
Personally, I prefer my crispy rice to be loose in my Sizzling Rice Soup (as opposed to the square rice cakes) for several reasons: it takes much less time to bake/dry the rice in the oven (20 minutes as opposed to 1 hour), and I prefer a small amount of crunchy rice in each bite, as opposed to having to break apart a large piece of rice cake once it’s been added to the soup.
This will be the way specified in this recipe.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
Spread 1 cup of cooked rice in a very thin layer on a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper. Using a fork helps to maintain the rice’s fluffiness and separation so that it bakes evenly.
It is ideal for this purpose that leftover rice is not too sticky and separates well.
White rice placed on a baking pan.
Bake for 20 minutes.
The rice will likely not brown significantly, but you will note that the grains are extremely firm and practically translucent. The rice will not be fully dry, but it will be sufficient so for deep-frying.
Once the rice has cooled, remove the parchment paper and spoon the baked rice into a bowl.
Set the baked rice aside to prepare the soup
Tip: This baked rice can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator. If you will be storing the rice for more than a few days, bake it for a few minutes longer or lay it out on the kitchen counter for a few hours to ensure that each grain is thoroughly dry before storing.
Preparing the Soup
Since the Sizzling Rice Soup will be served family-style as opposed to in individual bowls (so that the crispy rice can be poured into the soup for the sizzling effect), I recommend using a pot that you can cook and serve the soup in, so that you won’t have to worry about transferring the hot soup into a large serving bowl once it’s ready.
Clay pots, porcelain stockpots, and dutch ovens are fantastic possibilities.
Bring four cups of chicken stock to a boil over medium heat. Stir in one carrot (sliced). To learn how to chop the carrot into flower-shaped slices, please go here.
Obviously, you can slice the carrot whichever you please, but this makes the meal seem so beautiful.
Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of soy sauce, and 1 teaspoon of Shaoxing wine (optional) to the soup.
Add two stalks of baby bok choy that have been finely sliced. Almost any vegetable can be added to this soup, but I would recommend limiting the number to three to keep the soup simple. Baby corn, water chestnuts, and bamboo shoots are all excellent alternatives.
Return the broth to a boil, then add 8 to 10 medium-sized shrimp. Allow the soup to boil briefly, then turn off the heat and cover the saucepan. Shrimp will continue to cook, so turning off the heat at this point will prevent them from becoming overcooked.
This soup can be easily made vegetarian by substituting vegetable stock for chicken broth and eliminating shrimp.
vegetarian soup with shrimp. Cover the soup pot until you are prepared to serve.
Making Crispy Rice For Sizzling Rice Soup
Pouring the crispy rice into the soup while it is still boiling hot is the secret to making the rice sizzle.
Just before serving, heat approximately 1 cup of cooking oil (just enough to deep fried the rice) over medium heat in a wok.
Place a wooden chopstick in the wok to determine whether the oil is ready for deep-frying before adding the rice. If it instantly begins to bubble, it is ready.
Incorporate a small amount of rice into the wok. After only a few seconds, the rice grains will become puffed and brown.
Use a soup skimmer made of stainless steel to remove the rice from the oil.
Using the wok spatula, collect any stray grains of rice and set them on the skimmer. It is essential that no rice grains remain in the oil, or they would immediately burn.
Place the crispy rice on a serving platter, then immediately prepare the next batch. To deep-fry all the rice, you will need two to three separate batches. Work as quickly as possible (but carefully!) to ensure that the rice remains sufficiently hot when it is poured into the soup.
Pour the entire amount of crispy rice into the broth and observe it sizzle and snap! Enjoy!
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