I’ve attended a few of Donny’s hot pot parties, and they’re always fun. What’s that you say? What’s a hot pot party?
All you need for your own hot pot party is a big pot of boiling broth, stuff to cook in the broth, and friends to share it all with. Similar to shabu shabu, you mix some sauce in a bowl and then dip your freshly-cooked food into the sauce. As the night progresses, the broth gets more and more flavorful, and then you can add noodles to it in order to finish it off. Admittedly, we gorged ourselves so thoroughly this most recent time that we didn’t get to the noodles, but the option was there.
Donny is thoughtful enough to have a pot with a separator, so one side can be vegetarian without alienating all of his other friends. On my side we enjoyed cabbage, mushrooms, bok choy, tofu skins, and a variety of vegetarian delights from May Wah in Chinatown. For the others there was both chicken and lamb, each sliced thinly in order to cook more quickly, in addition to the veggies. What makes a truly great hot pot party, of course, is enjoying the food with friends. There’s nothing better than a communal, interactive dinner, and that’s why I hope Donny continues to host many, many more of these.
And now, for your enjoyment, a photo of Donny with a cabbage that’s bigger than his head: