My neighbors invited me and my Dad over for a hotpot party the other day! Ingredients:

A cauldron; a small tabletop heater/gas cooker; chopped veggies (taro, asparagus, chiles, sweet potato, broccoli, spinach, baby corn, potatoes, turnips); yummy soybean treats (various tofu/the firm kind, also Buddhists are ingenious at creating meat substitutes like faux meatballs, faux shrimp, and faux bacon!); and real meat in chunks (pork loin, abalone, fish, anything that can withstand boiling. Duckblood cubes are also really popular.)

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Ready to rock and roll.

Next, put water in the pot and fire it up to boiling. You can add a little salt and oil if desired while it warms up. Everyone grabs chopsticks and starts tossing their favorite bits into the boiling water.

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Dad couldn’t wait! Claimed he was just doing quality control.

When you judge something is ready, fish it out and snack (carefully, it’ll be HOT). After a few rounds, the broth begins to build…then you ladle it into your bowl on top of the choice bits. This is a really fun party food, participatory and delicious.

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We had two Buddhists in our group, so a vegetarian hotpot was also featured. Unexpectedly savory!!

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