Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Winter Food Love: Sichuan Hot Pot

Who needs football when you've got a day filled with writing, the Puppy Bowl and delicious Sichuan cuisine? Yes, I’ll admit that while I did manage to catch the last half of Sunday’s Superbowl showdown, the highlight of my weekend was definitely our visit to Mala Tang in Arlington for Chinese hot pot.

For those who have never tried it before, hot pot is similar to fondue, except that you cook meats and veggies in a spicy “mala” broth. Plus, since Mala Tang gave us each our own mini pots, the broth itself even became a delicious soup we could close out the meal with after feasting on everything from shrimp to beef to lamb. (I decided to once again forego my on-again-off-again vegetarianism in the presence of so much tasty food.)
A hot pot filled with peppers and spicy "mala" broth.
In addition to the amazing hot pot portion of the meal, Mala Tang also served up some of the best appetizers I’ve ever eaten, including mapo tofu and spicy wontons. In fact, even if we had skipped the hot pot experience altogether and simply filled up on small bites like these, I know I still would have left feeling very happy and full.

Have you ever eaten Sichuan hot pot? If not, I highly recommend it, especially if you can go with a group of about 5-6 people like we did, which makes it easy to share entrees and sample lots of different things all in one visit. It’s definitely the perfect way to warm up on a cold winter’s night!

23 comments:

  1. Wow, this looks great! I haven't tried Sichuan hot pot, but I have tried Japanese shabu shabu - I found the broth to be a bit bland, but this spicy broth looks delicious.

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  2. Sounds great! I have never tried it but would love it; lamb is so yummy!

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  3. There's a restaurant I used to visit in Cali that had this. Wish Atlanta did.

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  4. I have been wanting to try hot pot! I think there is a place near me that does it. I should give it a try soon!

    Jayme @ Her Late Night Cravings

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  5. ooh you have me wanting to find a chinese restaurant that serves this hot pot, i really really want to eat this right now. it looks so yummy

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  6. I have never tried it but have heard great things! Husband and I will definitely have to try it out!

    xo

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  7. I would love to try something like this! Sounds delicious.

    Kinda sounds like Korean BBQ too which is so much fun with a group of people.

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  8. I have never heard of it before. I am off to google it and find out more about it.

    Tracy @ Sunny Days and Starry Nights

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  9. oh yum! i'd definitely like to try this deliciousness.

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  10. Ooooo Sichuan hot pot! You are one adventurous diner..... I have met few Caucasians that have tried this.

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  12. Lovely post and blog! I'm your newest follower :) Would you mind checking out our blog & following back via GFC and Bloglovin'? Looking forward to your next post!

    sixthtractate.blogspot.com

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  13. wow! I've never even heard of this but it looks and sounds delicious! I'm sure I'll be able to find a place that serves this somewhere in NY..off to search on yelp!

    Stay warm this weekend!

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  14. My husband LOVES mapo tofu and sichuan hotpot is so tasty! Mmm now I'm craving something spicy...

    xoxo,
    Chic 'n Cheap Living

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  15. Someone was telling me about the puppy bowl...cuteness

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  16. I haven't had hot pot. But. I went to a place called Hot Pots once with a coworker in the hope that it WAS hot pot and it turned out to be a paint your own pottery place. I was SO MAD. I have always wanted to try it!

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  17. OMG, I love Hot Pot! It's one of the things I request my mom makes when I come home.

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  18. We should definitely trade places on holidays because I LOVE AMERICAN HOLIDAY FOOD!!!!! Omg...I love turkey the whole 9 yards for thanksigiving, of course I can't complain because my Mom is a fantastic cook! Regardless....I love traditional holiday fanfare.

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  19. from your review it sounds delicious! i want to tryyy! xx

    Letters To Juliet

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  20. I flipping LOVE hot pot. I swear, I end up eating way tooooo much whenever I do, especially when I add spice to the broth! OMG now I want some.
    ♥ laura
    the blog of worldly delights
    the shop of worldly delights

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  21. i love hot pot!! there is a great little place near us that has amazing broth and "mix-ins" - you're right, it's the most fun with a group but hubby and I go too just us and eat like kings for a week!

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