Animals: Love them or hate them, we also eat them. And nothing better illustrates just how many of them we eat (and how thoroughly) than Calvin Schwabe's giant compendium of recipes from every corner of the world, excerpts of which are appearing in Salon this week, Monday through Friday -- one recipe each day on the Life and People sites -- by kind permission of the University Press of Virginia. This one comes from China, where it's known as "Tsu tu pao pi."
"Cover [the contents of] a large can of abalone or a large fresh abalone with water and simmer it for 4 hours. Remove, cool, and save the liquid. Slice the abalone diagonally. Slice some water chestnuts. Soak a number of dried mushrooms and discard the hard stems. Combine 3 T Chinese oyster sauce with all but 1/4 C abalone liquid. Add abalone, water chestnuts, and 2C sliced bamboo shoots. Cut a pig's stomach into strips 1/2 in. by 1-1/4 in. In a wok momentarily stir-fry some chopped garlic and chopped ginger in oil. Add the stomach and stir-fry quickly. Add a mixture of 1 T soy, 2 t sherry, 2 t salt, and 2 t sugar and stir-fry 1 minute more. Add 2-1/2 C water and 1/4 C abalone liquid and simmer 5 minutes. Remove all to a deep pot and simmer 1 more hour. Add the mushrooms and simmer 30 minutes. Finally, add the abalone mixture and simmer several minutes more.
This soup is specially valued in China to stimulate the flow of a mother's milk."