Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

I had to try my new double-boiling Chinese soup pot, so specifically sourced some nice Korean Ginseng ($100 HKD for 2 pieces) so I could make double-boiled ginseng soup with chicken (and pork). I love the genuine taste of Ginseng, it’s smooth and golden. And I love it in soups even more! Using the simplest of herbs, the soup takes a solid 3 hours in the double-boiler – but comes out rich, delicious and bursting full of flavours. Truly one of my favourite double-boiled goodies.

The benefits of ginseng and chicken soup are also numerous. Ginseng is usually described as “nourishing life” and the effects of the double-boiler, which maintains the soup at a lower heat without disturbing the ingredients physically, enable the flavours and efficacy of the ginger to permeate throughout the soup. The soup enhance immune functions and make body functions strong like the heart, lungs and spleen.

Soup Name

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup

Traditional Chinese Name:  

人參雞湯 (rén sēn jī tāng)


For recipes and videos, visit us on YouTube.

What’s involved?

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 3 hours in double boiler

Total time: 3 hours and 15 mins 

Serves: 4-5 bowls


The ingredients include: Fresh Korean ginseng, pork, chicken, dried red dates, dried Chinese Yam, and dried longans. I used chicken drumsticks instead of a whole chicken (which is usually recommended). The constraints you’re working with include the size of your double-boiler. In most cases, double-boilers need to fit inside another pot, so unless you’re got a restaurant-sized soup pot, you are restricted to the size of your double-boiling pot to fit the ingredients.


To keep the soup as “skinny” as possible, I removed the skin and as much fat as I could. Then I chopped the drumsticks into 3’s so that I can compact the size of the ingredients to fit into the double-boiler. The same applied for the pork shank. I didn’t blanch the meat as both didn’t have that much fat and I rinsed them under cool water before throwing it into the soup to clean them.

Keep the herbs simple. A mixture of these will suffice. Actually, my herbalist even suggested to just use dried Chinese Yam and that’s it, but I liked a little bit of sweetness and wanted to balance the coolness of the ginseng with the heaty of the dried longans just a little. If you’re scared that it’s too cooling, throw in 1-2 slices of ginger to balance it out.

Start by boiling your soup water. To be honest, I am eye-balling everything, but I started with a half pot of water and decided that I could always add more water after fitting all the ingredients in. Once the water boils, throw in all the ingredients together and boil on high for about 30 minutes. This is still OUTSIDE of the double-boiler.


The point of boiling it outside is to make sure everything is boiling inside and sufficiently cooking and mixing and bringing out nice flavours. I then turn off the stove and let it cool enough to bring the double-boiler into the pot to really begin the double-boiling process. Once inside the double-boiling pot, you can top it off with boiling water to ensure it’s full (more soup) and fill the double-boiling outside pot with warm or slightly hot water. Boil the outside pot until it really boils and then reduce to a very, very, very small boil and keep it tightly covered.

Double-boil it for about 3 hours and when it’s done, the soup will be a rich, golden colour and smell delicious. The house permeates with this ginseng fragrance and it’s beautiful.


I recommend directly serving from the double-boiler to the bowl.  No salt is needed. Enjoy!!!

Variations to the soup can include using the black, silkie chicken instead. They are definitely smaller, so hopefully will fit – but in general, this soup is made with both chicken and pork. You can also change up some of the herbs to include maybe the large dried dates, Astragalus Root,  wolfberries, or Codonopsis Pilosula Root.

Cooking Instructions

  1. Boil 1 separate pot of water to blanch your protein
  2. You can also begin to boil your pot of soup water in the thermal pot with the 3L of cold water
  3. Prepare your chicken any way you’d like.  I tend to quarter it and reserve the breast for another meal, using only the legs and bones.
  4. In your blanching pot, drop in the chicken bones and meat into the boiling water and blanch for 5-6 minutes, or until the water re-boils.
  5. Slice the wintermelon into large pieces, keeping the skin on.
  6. Using gloves, peel the Chinese (or Japanese) Yam and cut into large 2-inch thick pieces
  7. Cut the gobo root into 2 inch long pieces, keeping the skin on
  8. When your soup water boils, transfer the meat, add in the dried herbal ingredients, and all the roots and wintermelon
  9. Boil on high for 30 minutes
  10. Transfer for a thermal pot for another 4 hours to let it finish cooking
  11. Serve and enjoy!

For more videos, visit us on YouTube.




Chef tips:

  • Ceramic double boilers are the best, especially what you put the soup in.  You can use a metal outer double boiler, but ceramic or glass as best for boiling the soup


  • The Chinese double-boiled soups tend to have more than one protein (chicken + pork) as that really create the intense flavours that double-boiled soups are for



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Soup Name: Black Silkie Chicken with Vegetables and Chestnuts

Traditional Chinese Name:  黑雞蘿蔔玉米栗子湯 (hēi jī luó bo yù mǐ lì zǐ tāng)

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Amount serves: 4 servings (around 250 mL each)

What Ingredients are required?

1 whole fresh black silkie chicken, quartered (with skin and innards)
20 fresh chestnuts, peeled
2 whole corn, halved
2 whole carrots, sliced
2 fresh white onions, halved
10 dried scallops (conpoys)

3 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Soak your conpoy in warm water for about 10 minutes.
  2. Boil a medium pot of water (for the chestnuts). When the water boils, add in the chestnuts to boil for 5 minutes.
  3. If you can, immediately peel the chestnuts (as its easiest to peel when it’s still hot). Set aside.
  4. Empty the water and boil a new pot to blanch the chicken (including the innards).
  5. Boil your soup water and prepare the vegetables.
  6. Once your soup water boils, add all the ingredients together.
  7. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes and reduce to a medium simmer for another hour.
  8. Salt as needed, serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • This soup is lean in fat and high in protein. The meat of the silkie chicken is very tasty and the chicken itself is usually skinnier and has less fat than of its white counterpart
  • The silkie chicken soup base is great to freeze and use later (by adding fresh vegetables or fruits)
  • This soup is ideal for children (and the whole family)
  • You can add literally any vegetables with the black silkie chicken

Any precautions?

  • Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after handling raw chicken meat
Coconut, Chinese Yam and Fresh Conch in Chicken Broth

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Soup Name: Coconut, Chinese Yam and Fresh Conch in Chicken Broth

Traditional Chinese Name: 椰子螺雞湯 (yē zi luó jī tāng)


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What ingredients are required?

1 fresh chicken, quartered
2 large fresh conch
1 fresh whole coconut, sliced into thin pieces
2 feet of fresh Chinese Yam, largely sliced
2 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Prepare chicken & conch (read each ingredient on instructions on preparation)
  2. In a pot of boiling water, blanch chicken and conch
  3. Prepare Chinese Yam by washing, peeling and cutting into large edible cubes (wear gloves while doing this)
  4. Prepare fresh coconut by cutting it with the inner brown skin into long thin pieces
  5. When your water boils, add all the ingredients in and boil on high for 30 minutes.  Reduce to a medium boil for another hour.
  6. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • This is a great winter soup as it is warming to the body (but not overly heaty)
  • Naturally sweet, so no salt is needed
  • This Chinese soup is rich in proteins and fiber

Any precautions?

  • The coconut isn’t the easiest thing to cut into thin strips, so if it’s too difficult, use larger chunks
  • Be sure to thoroughly clean the conch (ie: with either salt, cornstarch or a toothbrush)
  • The coconut meat is high in saturated fat and is high in cholesterol, so consume with caution
  • Use an oil scooper to remove the fattiness of the chicken meat in the soup