What is one Asian dish you probably haven’t experienced – yes, experienced – but should? It’s Hot Pot! You may have heard of it or seen pictures of it before, but are probably wondering what really is it? So let’s dive right in to our beginner’s guide to Hot Pot!
1. What is Hot Pot?
In Chinese, ‘Hot Pot’ translates to huǒguō (火锅), which literally means ‘fire pot.’ Hot Pot is a communal dining experience that has often been referred to as the Asian version of fondue, where everyone at the table cooks fresh ingredients in a large pot of simmering broth. For this reason, Hot Pot is less of a dish than it is a communal dining experience.
2. Where did it originate?
There are many variations of Hot Pot, however it is thought to have originated in Eastern Asia by the Mongolian Empire over 1000 years ago. Historians believe that Mongolian soldiers used to camp outside and have dinner together circled around a pot over the fire, having a shared meal while also keeping warm. Some even claim that these soldiers used their metal helmets to hold and cook the broth, as they had limited cooking utensils while they were on the go.
3. How does it work?
There are three basic components to Hot Pot: soup base, dipping ingredients and sauces.
SOUP BASE: Depending on the region in China, there are many different styles of Hot Pot. The primary difference between regions is the broth! The most popular broth is the basic cloudy broth made from chicken, ginger, goji berries and other aromatics. Here at Hot Impression, we offer a large variety of broths ranging from light to spicy to appeal to all taste buds. For those who prefer a combination of broths, we can serve them in the same pot with a metal divider, as shown above. To check out our full range of soup bases, you can find our Hot Pot menu here.
DIPPING INGREDIENTS: Essential to a Hot Pot meal is the dipping ingredients, one of which is thinly sliced meats! These meats are cut very thin so that they only take a few seconds to cook through. Although you dip them in multiple times, it only takes about a minute to fully cook them. Other common dipping ingredients include seafood, noodles, rice cakes and a wide variety of fresh vegetables.
SAUCES: For many Hot Pot lovers, the dipping sauce is a very personal thing! In addition to the broth, the sauce is what gives flavor to the dipping ingredients. We offer a variety of dipping sauces for our guests, some of which include our famous ‘signature sauce’, ‘spicy & hot’ and if you dare – the ‘numb your tongue!’ You can check out more of our sauces here.
Now that you have an overview of what Hot Pot is and what it entails, we hope you will be more comfortable with ordering it the next time you’re dining out! At Hot Impression, our All-You-Can-Eat (AYCE) Hot Pot dining experience offers a wide variety of fresh ingredients, which introduces the original Hotpot culture to our guests. Our servers cannot wait to provide you with an unparalleled Hot Pot dining experience once our dining room re-opens!
We look forward to seeing you again soon. For now, please feel free to order takeout by calling us at (647) 748-4646 or have your favourites delivered using UberEats, Fantuan, Fod, FoodHwy or Lanyangyang.