..because it's the Winter Solstice today!
This soup is also (apparently) known as Tang Yuan. Now, this soup has been a long time coming, and I have a short-ish story about my Holy Grail of foods. Yes, that's right, I just called this the Holy Grail. So the thing is, my grandma used to make this for me when I was young, but hasn't made it since. And since I was young enough to remember the soup, but not old enough to have any definite memories of it, I have never been able to recreate it, look it up, or describe it accurately enough for someone else to know what it is. I had vague memories of "mochi-like things" and "things I remember as carrots but aren't carrots" in the soup (actual things I have said to people when trying to describe it.) Well, I happened to stumble across a picture of dumplings filled with red bean paste on Foodgawker when I was browsing for some other recipe, and many clicks and Google searches later, I happened upon Noodle Fever's Tang Yuan soup recipe. I almost cried out of sheer joy.
TL;DR This is awesome soup that I've been trying for something like 15 years to find. If that isn't a glowing endorsement, I don't know what is.
Incidentally, this is also the first time I've ever really shopped at 99 Ranch. The poor Chinese man behind the meat counter looked to me to clarify N's order, but I couldn't help him, haha.