Shark fin soup was once the dish often served at wedding banquets, birthday dinners of elders and of course, during Chinese New Year dinners. When news broke out about the horrible truth of how sharks were tortured just to obtain their fins, imitation shark fins became popular.
What is imitation shark fin made of?
Imitation shark fin made to look like the real thing is by using agar-agar. It creates the translucent long strips that look like real shark fins. These agar-agar strips can be bought at Asian grocers or supermarkets although they aren't often available. Therefore, the best substitute for shark fins are Korean glass noodles which are cut short to lengths of ca. 5 cm.
What makes the flavour of imitation shark fin soup authentic?
Although a substitute of shark fin was used instead, I really do think the taste and amazing flavours of the soup were kept intact as how I remembered it. The trick was to use homemade broth comprising of chicken drumstick and scallops to bring out the best flavours. You may substitute dried scallops with a tablespoon of oyster sauce. A bit of dark soy sauce is used to give it some colour.
Can I prepare shark fin soup in advance?
If you like, prepare the broth hours in advance or it can be prepared 3 days earlier although I would not recommend the latter. It would be more delicious if it is freshly prepared.
How to serve shark fin soup?
Serve this soup as an appetizer with a few drops of sesame oil and some Chinese black vinegar. Oh, so yummy!