Experiences - Australia

DIY Sichuan Hot Pot Plus the Best Restaurants to Try It

As the weather becomes cooler, there’s never been a better time to master the art of Sichuan hot pot at home. The perfect dish for entertaining, Sichuan hot pot allows your friends and family to cook their own feast! Simply set an electric wok or gas burner in the centre of your dining table, then have your guests dip, swirl and cook the ingredients to their liking.

Before you get started, here are some simple tips for making Sichuan hot pot at home.

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1. Choose your broth

Heat-seekers will love the fiery depths of traditional Sichuan hot pot broth (hong tang), brimming with mouth-numbing Sichuan peppercorns, dried chillies, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, star anise and fennel. It’s also advisable to serve a mild broth (qing tang). This delicate stock of chicken, pork bones, ginger, spring onion and tomato is perfect for children, those who don’t like spices, and even the chilli lovers who just need a bit of time out from the heat! Simmer the soup bases in advance so you’re ready to fire up the hot pots once your guests arrive.

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2. Prepare your ingredients

The sky is the limit when it comes to choosing raw ingredients for cooking in the hot pot. Authentic Sichuan favourites include:

  • Green vegies, such as wombok and bok choy
  • Mushrooms, including a mixture of enoki, shimeji and shiitake
  • Tofu, as cubes of firm tofu, fried tofu puffs or sheets of uba (tofu skin)
  • Seafood, such as squid balls, prawns, and slices of marinated fish
  • Tissue-thin slices of beef, marinated chicken, or skewers of spiced lamb
  • Rice cakes and vermicelli noodles for soaking up the flavours of the broth

3. Set the table

Each guest will need chopsticks, bowls, metal hot pot strainers and dipping sauces, such as soy, sesame and chilli oil, or a creamy sesame dressing.

Before you try DIY Sichuan hot pot at home, why not experience it at one of these top-rated restaurants in Melbourne and Sydney.

Dainty Sichuan: Melbourne, South Yarra, Box Hill

We love the rich, pungent broth, the spanking-fresh ingredients, and the jugs of soy milk or tomato juice to quell the fire at Dainty Sichuan.

Spicy Sichuan: Sydney Chinatown and Glebe

Opt for the half-and-half soup, then start dunking authentic ingredients, from crowd-pleasing king prawns to more challenging offal options at Spicy Sichuan.

Here’s some inspiration to try more tempting hot pot recipes.

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