The only reason that this is called Bak Kut Teh is that I used the herbal premix. As I was cooking this for my brother's family who has converted to vegetarian since my mum's passing.
I seldom make vegetarian soup as always wonder how to make the soup tasty without adding any meat or onion. And since my dad used to like BKT (he's 'half vegetarian' who doesn't consume meat these days), I decided to make something similar.
I rather call this a herbal soup as the packet contains herbs & spices like Yu Zhu(玉竹), Don Gui (当归), wolfberry, star anise (八角), liquorice (Gan Cao甘草) and clove. I see GOODNESS!
I forgot to take photo of my soup as I was too busy serving the guests, but nonetheless like to document what I cooked for my future reference.
Vegetarian BKT/ Herbal Soup
Fried tofu packets
Beancurd Sheet, abt 2 pcs, soaked and cut into small pieces
Honey Date, 1 pc (optional)
Some caramel/thick dark sauce for flavour
1. Boil a bag of BKT premix with 1.2 L of water. Once boiled, turn down the fire and let it simmer for 45min min, or upto 2hours. This will allow the flavour from the packet to intensify. I transferred the boiled water and packet into the slow cooker and left it unattended for the next few hours.
2. Half hour before eating, add the all the ingredients into the pot and bring it to boil.
3. Taste - add salt, some caramel/thick soy sauce and vegetarian oyster sauce for flavour. Without these, the soup can taste rather flat.
(a) It may seem to have lots of mushrooms but it is fine to use less or just add what you like.
(b) Honey date is optional but in the absence of meat, this adds 'sweetness' to the soup.