Backcountry Quarantine Cooking
Spring Hot + Sour Jerky Soup with Lentine Alexis
by Lentine Alexis
Got jerky hanging out in the pantry? GOOD! Add a few handfuls of spring peas and veggies and you have a slightly spicy, highly-non-traditional version of this classic Sichuan soup. The recipe below calls for beef jerky (teriyaki spiced is awesome!) but you could substitute turkey, chicken, bison or even coconut jerky for a delicious meal. Make sure you simmer your jerky long enough to tenderize it before adding veggies!
I love using fresh mixed peas – spring peas and snow peas, sliced and whole – but frozen peas would work like a dream. Miso paste and gochujang paste make your broth and both are easy to find in the international section of your well-stocked grocery store, but in a pinch you could use crushed red pepper to bring the heat instead of the paste.
Spring Hot + Sour Jerky Soup
Makes 2 hearty servings
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, grated or sliced thinly
- 1-1.5” piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated or minced
- 2 heaping Tbsp white miso paste
- 1 Tbsp gochujang fermented chili paste
- 1 Tbsp Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or soy sauce
- 2 tsp rice vinegar
- 1 ½ cups mixed fresh or frozen peas (such as snow peas and snap peas, chopped and whole)
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 8oz beef jerky, teriyaki flavored
- ¼ cup chopped scallions, to garnish
- 2 Tbsp sesame seeds (optional, to garnish)
Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook garlic and ginger, stirring often, until softened and very fragrant, about 3 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the miso paste and gochujang paste with 2 Tbsp water to dissolve. Add them to the saucepan with your aromatics, then add 4 cups water along with the Bragg’s Liquid Aminos and rice vinegar. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer. Add the jerky and reduce heat as needed to maintain a simmer and cook until flavors come together, about 10 minutes, or until the jerky is tender.
Add mushrooms and peas and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Taste, and season with salt if desired. Remove soup from heat and ladle into bowls. Top with scallions and sesame seeds, and enjoy!
Leftover soup can be kept refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one week.