How to make Chinese Soups or Herbal Teas:

Chinese Soup Design 101

Welcome!

This space is important for me to explore further with my community.

“Give a person a fish, feed them for a day. Teach a person to fish, feed them for life.” 

I am a big believer of teaching for growth. Sustainable growth. And I’ve come to realize a lot of questions I get from the community all point back to teaching some key design and TCM principles. So here’s the start to something great… a series of “learn it yourself” and evolve your soup and tea making beyond what I share as recipes.

GO AND CREATE SOMETHING BEAUTIFUL!

 

Why is this useful?

  • I get a lot of questions about replacing ingredients (some are hard to find depending where you are based), so understanding the basic premise is super useful when you can’t find what you need!
  • It’s a mix and match game. Optimize it to support your health needs.
  • Now you have options beyond following recipes. You can tweak based on flavors and conditions with base recipes

As you begin your soup making journey, here are a few things I’ve learned along the way…

 

  • Experiment. Test. Learn. Repeat.
  • Be true to follow your favorite flavors. If you love the outcomes, you’ll do it more.
  • There is not only 1 way to make Chinese soups or teas.  There are many ways.  Follow the key principles and you’ll be perfect!
  • You don’t have to learn everything at once. It’s taken me 18 years to get to where I am. Constantly exploring, learning, asking, testing. 

One guiding principle in Traditional Chinese Medicine is the yin yang theory.  In the natural world, there exists a balance between 2 opposing and co-existing forces and yet, they also exist in each other.  Our bodies, minds, and souls are designed the same way in that to be healthy, we need to be in harmony between these 2 bipolar states.  Yin is receptive and passive, calm and slow, embodying cold and damp qualities (when we are sleeping).  Yang is its exact opposite in aggressive and active, embodying heat, dryness, and movement (when we are awake).

One of our mission at The Chinese Soup Lady is to bring these principles into the foods and drinks we consume in order to support harmony.  

You can explore more about some Traditional Chinese Medicine theories in these posts.

 The example:

A warming healing apple and ginger Chinese herbal tea

You can find the full recipe here.

Teas are the easiest to design. 

 

  • They are primarily made with fruit, roots, and herbs (no vegetables or meats)
  • Teas don’t always mean made with tea leaves.  Traditional Chinese Herbal teas actually don’t contain tea leaves.
  • Some Chinese herbal teas are so easy to make, they are simply steeped with boiling water.
  • Teas are super easy to make!  They can be made in 10 mins.
  • Simple herbal teas can rotate the same bunch of ingredients (either warming [increase yang] or cooling [increase yin] are the 2 main categories).

I would love to hear if you’ve got other ideas!  Drop them in the comments or any of my social channels and I’ll give you a shout out and add it to the post!

EXPLORE MORE

How to make a warm and delicious salmon congee

Dish Name:  Salmon Congee Traditional Chinese Name: 三文魚粥 (sān wèn yú zhōu).  This is a very Cantonese label of this soup. 三文魚 is the Cantonese way of saying salmon, so simply, it's salmon congee in direct translation. Nature: Neutral with the ginger additional,...

How to make a cooling Chinese tea for sore throats (with pu’er tea)

Tea Name: Cooling Chinese Pu'er and Chrysanthemum Tea (for sore throats) Traditional Chinese Name: 普洱菊花茶 (pǔ'ěr jú huā chá). The direct translation of this "pu'er chrysanthemum tea". This is the most basic of this tea and can be found commonly in dim sum restaurants...

How to soothe a sore throat with salted kumquats with honey

Tea Name: Soothing healing salted kumquat with honey Chinese herbal tea Traditional Chinese Name: 金桔蜂蜜茶 (jīn jú fēng mì chá). The direct translation of this is "kumquat honey tea".  Nature:  Warming Taste: Savory and sweet (You can read this article on the impact on...

How to make a one-pot delicious meatballs with potatoes and carrots stew in sweet soy sauce

Dish Name: One pot delicious meatballs with potatoes and carrots stew in sweet soy sauce Nature:  Neutral Taste: Savory and sweet (You can read this article on the impact on your body of different food tastes!) For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.Another...

How to make an easy delicious Miso Butter Ramen for dinner

Soup Name: Japanese-styled miso butter ramen noodles soup Traditional Chinese Name: 日本拉麵 (Rì běn lā miàn). The direct translation is Japanese Ramen or Japanese pulled noodles. There are many variations of this dish depending on type of ramen (thin, thick, green tea...

How to make a warm and delicious salmon congee

Dish Name:  Salmon Congee Traditional Chinese Name: 三文魚粥 (sān wèn yú zhōu).  This is a very Cantonese label of this soup. 三文魚 is the Cantonese way of saying salmon, so simply, it's salmon congee in direct translation. Nature: Neutral with the ginger additional,...

How to make a cooling Chinese tea for sore throats (with pu’er tea)

Tea Name: Cooling Chinese Pu'er and Chrysanthemum Tea (for sore throats) Traditional Chinese Name: 普洱菊花茶 (pǔ'ěr jú huā chá). The direct translation of this "pu'er chrysanthemum tea". This is the most basic of this tea and can be found commonly in dim sum restaurants...

How to soothe a sore throat with salted kumquats with honey

Tea Name: Soothing healing salted kumquat with honey Chinese herbal tea Traditional Chinese Name: 金桔蜂蜜茶 (jīn jú fēng mì chá). The direct translation of this is "kumquat honey tea".  Nature:  Warming Taste: Savory and sweet (You can read this article on the impact on...

How to make a one-pot delicious meatballs with potatoes and carrots stew in sweet soy sauce

Dish Name: One pot delicious meatballs with potatoes and carrots stew in sweet soy sauce Nature:  Neutral Taste: Savory and sweet (You can read this article on the impact on your body of different food tastes!) For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.Another...

How to make an easy delicious Miso Butter Ramen for dinner

Soup Name: Japanese-styled miso butter ramen noodles soup Traditional Chinese Name: 日本拉麵 (Rì běn lā miàn). The direct translation is Japanese Ramen or Japanese pulled noodles. There are many variations of this dish depending on type of ramen (thin, thick, green tea...

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