Mongolian Hot Pot

As I am sitting here typing this post, my skinny jeans are about to burst, and I wanted to share with you all the reason why I am in this predicament… Mongolian Hot Pot!

You see my Dad used to tell us that our Grandmother’s family was related with the Chinese emperor, for some reason I always thought we were part Mongolian (the Yang Dynasty), until recently I realized he meant the “Last Chinese Emperor”, who was actually Manchurian… From this information mix up, my heart has always had a warm spot for the Mongolians. So when the popular chainΒ  restaurant “Little Sheep Mongolian Hotpot” opened in Houston, I dragged hubby and little girl to check out what the hype was all about. To tell you the truth, I was never a big fan of hot pots, what’s the big deal about cooking your own food items in a boiling pot of semi-flavored broth? Well was I in for a surprise! As soon as we walked in, the smell won me over! The broth was intensely flavored, we really didn’t need any dipping sauce. The only issue with going there was the bill, no matter which combination of items we order, they always end up being quite pricey.

Fortunately recently we found the hot pot spice packages at our local Asian super market, so tonight was our first time trying to recreate this deliciousness at home. All I can say is WOW! We had a good old time chowing down, had to take a nice long walk afterward in the chilly weather… Hubby and little girl proceed to sleep off the food while I struggle with my jeans currently. Looks like the next time we have Mongolian hot pot at home, I will have to cut the food to about half the quantity!

Since there’s really no recipe for this, just follow the package direction if you have access to Little Sheep’s spice packs, please enjoy the photos below:

2 sided pot, 1 side spicy for hubby and I, the other side is mild for little girl.
Frozen tofu, glass noodles, dry tofu sheets
Lettuce, Napa cabbage and bean sprouts
Sauces (really was not necessary)
Tofu puffs, Korean rice cakes, imitation crab meat
Fish balls, fish balls with roe inside, shrimp and squid dumplings
Waiting for the broth to boil
Time to start adding the items into the boiling broth
Close up of our Mongolian hot pot!

22 Comments Add yours

  1. Ohhh we have that restaurant here too, and we found the package in a Chinese store last year. Shen invited friends over so that he can have another pot of spicy version, while the kids and I eat non-spicy version in another pot. It’s a good package! The emperor story was really funny! We love hot pot and I like it because I don’t have to cook and it’s so easy to prepare dinner… =P

    1. Jeno says:

      We were surprised at how yummy the spice packages are! It’s smart that you guys invited friends over to share, the 3 of us were so stuffed after eating, I couldn’t even look at the left over without kicking myself for preparing too much food! Glad you enjoyed the emperor story. My Dad kept on telling us we would be princesses if China is still under Qing Dynasty’s ruling, but come to find out, my Grandma’s family were not actually closely related, more of a distant relatives that had lots of rice crops or something like that… Either way I tell hubby I am a princess, of course he has his own story of how his ancestors used to rule Vietnam so he should be a king. Wishful thinking!

      1. Hi Cindy, how do you prepare the dry tofu sheet from the Asian markets? Do you just cook them straight from the package?

      2. Jeno says:

        Hi Shen! Yes, I broke the the dry tofu sheets into half, and just dump the pieces into the hot broth, they do take a bit longer to cook, but totally worth the wait!

  2. Sissi says:

    Jeno, your posts are so amusing! I can imagine you struggling with jeans (I know what it means πŸ˜‰ and sometimes even think I should put tighter clothes BEFORE I start eating something dangerously fat or high-calorie).
    I have never had the Mongolian hot pot, but it looks amazing! Have you spent the whole day preparing it? You have made a real emperor’s feast πŸ˜‰
    Your restaurant experience reminds me of what I had twice in two different Korean restaurants when I ordered barbecue. The portions were very small, they made us pay for every tiny plate of pickles and it was so expensive, it spoiled my evenings.
    Seeing the pot divided in half reminds me I always used to love hot dishes (even as a small child I would add chili to everything) and if my mum did this I would only use the hot part anyway πŸ˜‰

    1. Jeno says:

      Thank you Sissi! I think most women know the struggle of jean battling, I was not kidding about that last night, it got painful!

      Preparation for hotpot is actually very simple, just boil some water/chicken broth (6 cups), add 20 garlic cloves and 5 stalks of green onions (The white park only). Once the broth’s boiling, pour into the pot that will go on the table top stove, then add in the spice packs. The rest is just getting the food items you want and place them onto plates so it would be easy for people to pick up and dip into the flavored broth.

      Wow, the Korean restaurant you described sure sounds pricey, the Little Sheep Mongolian Hotpot restaurant is a pleasure to go to, but our eyes are usually bigger than our stomach, so the bill would end up being around $100 for 3 people, that’s just crazy for hot pot! That’s awesome you were a fan of spicy food since you were a child, we’ve been training our little girl and she can take quite a bit of spices compare to her friends, but Mongolian hot spice might still be a bit much for now… Have a good weekend!

      1. Sissi says:

        Thank you, Jeno, for the recipe. I must try it one day!
        My parents have never encouraged me to eat spicy food, even though my mum has always cooked with lots of herbs and spices. It was my own initiative πŸ˜‰ You are so right with “training”! I think everyone can get used to hot chili and start to appreciate not only hotness, but its actual taste. Have a lovely weekend too!

  3. The last time I had hot pot was around last year, it’s indeed time to hotpot again especially because now it’s getting really cold here in Germany. I love mine with lots of dumplings (I am dumpling lover, you see ;)). I usually buy store-bought hot-pot seasonings, once I tried the Szechuan one and it was SOOO hot it was almost impossible to eat, I should try the Little Sheep one next time, I’ve never tried it yet because it’s pretty expensive over here.

    1. Jeno says:

      Hi CG! Dumplings in hotpot does indeed sound good! I do love spicy, though Szechuan ones sometimes has the numbing agent, and I am not a big fan of that feeling! My friend also had hot pot the same night, she actually used Tom Yum seasoning, which I never thought about doing. Let me know how you like the Little Sheep seasoning if you ever try it, they are kinda pricy but totally worth it!

  4. Jeno, I love this! Next time I want to accompany you and help you to eat everything up! πŸ˜€ I love how you made different “spiciness” departments for you adults and your little girl, Everything looks so good! I haven’t ever eaten a hot pot (Mongolian or whatever Asian) in my whole life, and now I feel like I’ve terribly missed something!

    1. Jeno says:

      Kath, hot pots are normally eating with friends and family, during the Winter months, Little Sheep restaurant is insanely popular, we normally have to wait at least 30 minutes to an hour for a table. It’s super easy to prepare, as long as you have a little table top burner, it’s a wonderful idea to experiment with whatever your taste buds desire for the day!

      1. I have to get a table top burner then! πŸ˜›

  5. Christy says:

    Whoa, the first thing that came to my mind is that it’s going to be HOT and SPICY!:) LOL, maybe I was still hung on my recent own experience with hot pot…hehehe πŸ˜€
    This looks like an awesome meal, and I do love hot pot, or we call it steamboat around here:P
    I do agree on what’s the fun in cooking our own stuffs and waiting for it to cook when we can just have things served up in an instant and with style and we just need to eat right? My mum used to say that too, and she will just grab stuffs from the plates during a hot pot session and cook it in the kitchen and then bring it to us…hahaha, and everyone says she spoils the fun of the hot pot experience!!:P

    You are from the royal family; wow, so should I start addressing you HRH Jeno? Hehehehe πŸ˜€

    1. Jeno says:

      Hi Christy!

      The spicy side was pretty hot, both sides were on the salty side and we definitely overate. Got some pointers for the next hot pot dinner though, half of everything!

      Hahaha, I am sure almost every parents think their children have royal blood, no matter how unladylike/gentlemenlike we might be… Your Mom sounds hilarious, I can imagine the hot pot cooking process driving a hungry person crazy!

  6. Jay says:

    wow…sounds scrumptiously tasty..
    first time your space Jeno..
    very interesting posts wtih excellent cliks..
    Am your happy follower now..;)
    do stop by mine sometime..
    Tasty Appetite

    1. Jeno says:

      Thank you so much for the kind words! I am now following your Facebook page, can’t wait to see more postings! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

  7. lyntrinix says:

    So funny on the emperor’s story but I love stories from the past, I’m always curious about them esp if they’re true-life ones. πŸ˜‰
    We always have hot pots during the CNY at my in-laws and it’s only the recent years that my parents decided on hot pot too so that it’s so much more easier for them. πŸ™‚
    They used sweetcorn cobs, carrots, napa cabbage and pork and/or chicken bones for the soup base (I always love these combinations for those soups I cooked for our meals). I never had the Mongolian before and it does looks and sounds so much more tastier! Wonder if I’m able to get the spice packages here. πŸ˜›

    1. Jeno says:

      Hey Lyn! Your broth combination sounds real yummy also, I am actually craving some hot soup right now since Houston has been so cold. If you do find the Mongolian hot pot spice packs, let me know how you like it!

    1. Jeno says:

      Hey Kath! Been doing good! Just busy with holiday stuff. I am actually going to have a posting tomorrow, it’s been too long I know! Hope you are having a great week!

  8. mjskit says:

    I love eating food like this! It’s so much fun and extremely tasty! Your meal is fantastic!

    1. Jeno says:

      Hi there! Thank you for your kind words! Hot Pot is now my family’s favorite meal to eat, and being able to eat at home saves a ton of money!

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