For this recipe (again a quick soup!), you will need the simplest of ingredients. Bean thread is what we call over here "tung hoon" or "tung fan". Basically they are clear vermicelli made from mung beans. With a springy texture, it can be used in soups as well as stir-fry with vegetables or in some cases, used as a major ingredient and eaten like one would eat vermicelli or "bee hoon".
Anyway, this is a homely dish and most of the ingredients are found easily in the market.
Here is what you need:
1 packet of mung bean threads, soaked in hot water and drained
3 tbsp dried shrimp, soaked, washed and drained
8 cups water
1 tbsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
fresh spinach (as much as you like), washed and drained
2 tbsp peanut oil
2 tsp minced ginger
2 tsp minced garlic
5 cups chicken stock
1 tsp Shao Hsing wine or sherry
In a pot, place the 8 cups of water, salt and baking soda. Bring to a boil and blanch spinach. Lift and drain spinach when it turns a bright green.
Heat another pot over high heat and add peanut oil. Add ginger, garlic and dried shrimp. Stir, then add chicken broth and wine. Cover pot. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and allow soup to simmer for another 10 minutes.
Turn the heat up and add spinach and bean thread. Boil again before turning off heat. Serve hot.