Sweet and Sour Pork with Ginger (for Confinement)

Sweet and Sour Pork with Ginger (for Confinement)

Sweet and Sour Pork with Ginger (for Confinement)

Soup Name:

Sweet and Sour Pork with Ginger (for Chinese Confinement)

Traditional Chinese Name:

糖醋排骨 (táng cù páigǔ)

For cooking videos, visit us on YouTube. 

This is another one of those great recipes that are handed down through generations. I got this from an Auntie who is an amazing cook and simplified this recipe so that it’s so simple and yet, tastes so good! You can use a variety of rib cuts – I’ve made it with the traditional Chinese spare ribs cut (pictured here), but also made it using baby back ribs, too. When I make this, I use the measurements as a base, but adjust it as it cooks. I know some people prefer it sweeter or more sour or more salty, so definitely sample your cooking as you go!

For this recipe, I will use a fatter cut of meat. This is because it stews for quite some time and you don’t want the pork to dry out and shrivel up into dried pork. Over time, the fat will come out and you can simply scoop it out before consumption.

I will also rinse the pork in warm water when I get them from the vendor (just in case). Then throw it into a stainless steel pot and follow this simple base for recipe. It’s basically 1-2-3 (tablespoons).

1 tablespoon of soy sauce
2 tablespoons of sugar (any type)
3 tablespoons of white vinegar

And then you proportion it out appropriately. So for the amount picture above, which is around 1 pound of spare ribs, I multiplied by 3, so I got 3 tablespoons of soy sauce, 6 tablespoons of sugar, and 9 tablespoons of white vinegar. If you want, you can add a quarter cup of water for good measure. For confinement, my recommendation is to load up on ginger. This can be ginger slices, ginger cubes, the whole ginger, grated ginger, ginger juice – however spicy you can take it, do it. Optional ingredients also include whole garlic, black or white pepper and even star anise.

What’s involved?

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 30+ mins (checking every 10 mins based on softness of meat and viscosity of the sauce)

Total time: 40+ mins

Serves: 1 large bowl

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of fresh spare ribs or pork ribs
  • 1 x 3 = 3 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 2 x 3 = 6 tablespoons of sugar
  • 3 x 3 = 9 tablespoons of white vinegar
  • 1-inch root of fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup of water

Instructions

  1. Rinse your spare ribs or pork ribs in warm water (to clean)
  2. Put all the ingredients into a stainless steel pot (or clay pot)
  3. Boil on high heat for 10 minutes
  4. Reduce to a low simmer for another hour, checking every 10 minutes on taste and whether it is drying out too much. If so, add another quarter cup of water.
  5. Remove oil and serve

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Ginger and Egg Fried Rice (for Chinese Confinement)

Ginger and Egg Fried Rice (for Chinese Confinement)

Ginger and Egg Fried Rice (for Chinese Confinement)

Soup Name:

Ginger and Egg Fried Rice (for Chinese Confinement)

Chinese Name: 雞蛋姜炒飯 (jī dàn jiāng chǎo fàn)

This dish is warming and designed to expel wind, replenish qi and blood.

 

For videos, visit us on YouTube.

This is a simple recipe part of our Confinement Series for new mothers. Designed to be heaty, healing and part of a balanced diet – actually anyone can eat this!

My version uses ginger juice (as I personally find the ginger shreds too spicy for my mild taste buds), but it is recommended to use the grated ginger flesh if you’re in confinement. Load on the ginger and black or white pepper! Other variations of this include adding chicken or pork, garlic and some neutral, diced veggies like choy sum.

And don’t forget to add that splash of sesame oil for both taste and warmth!

 

You can click here for more information on Chinese confinement.  

This recipe contains all the greats needed to get you through confinement (Sesame oil, ginger, black or white pepper ).

Ginger is excellent for warming the body and expelling wind (both important things to achieve during Chinese confinement). It is a nutritious and delicious course. This recipe is super easy to make.

I would recommend making a bowl / jar of pre-grated ginger so you can whip this up in less than 10 minutes. Any precautions? This is a heaty dish and not recommended for people who can’t too heaty foods or are currently overheated.

 

     

    What’s involved?

    Prep time: 10 mins

    Cook time: 15 mins

    Total time: 25 mins

    Serves: 1 cup of rice (but make more to store in the fridge for multiple consumption!)

    Ingredients
    • 1 tsp cooking oil
    • 1 bowl of rice (leftover rice best for fried rice)
    • 25g of fresh ginger, grated (produces 1 tablespoon of ginger juice)
    • 1 sprig of fresh green onions, diced
    • 1 egg
    • sesame oil
    • black or white pepper to taste
    • salt to taste
    Cooking Instructions
    1. In a frying pan on medium heat, add oil and start frying the rice (re-heating it for 2 minutes)
    2. Add in fresh ginger juice or grated ginger
    3. Add in fresh green onions
    4. Fry together for 2 minutes
    5. In the middle of the pan, open a hole and crack the egg directly into it, stirring and mixing the egg until relatively cooked
    6. Stir it altogether and add sesame oil, pepper, and salt to taste
    7. Serve and enjoy!

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    Soy Sauce Chicken Wings and Feet (for Chinese Confinement)

    Soy Sauce Chicken Wings and Feet (for Chinese Confinement)

    Soy Sauce Chicken Wings and Feet (for Chinese Confinement)

    Soup Name:

    Soy Sauce Chicken Wings and Feet (for Chinese Confinement)

    Chinese Name: 醬油雞腳 (jiàng yóu jī jiǎo)

     

    For more videos, visit us on YouTube.

    This is a very common Canton (Chinese-styled) dish. The soy sauce base can be used with pork, chicken (various parts), duck (wings are best), pigeon and any other meats with bones as best. The trick to this dish is that it must be simmered for some time (or use a pressure cooker) to let both the sauce seep deep into the meat and enable the meet to be almost falling off the bone.

    Why this particular dish is called out for Chinese confinement is that the chicken feet provides a healthy amount of collagen – and adding warming ingredients such as ginger, star anise and cinnamon help keep the body warm and heated throughout this period. My mom actually used to keep the sauce after she made it in a glass jar in the fridge, to be used again the next time around. The more it’s used, the tastier it gets. You can simply skim off the accumulated fat once it’s cooled and add more soy sauce if it’s been reduced too far. A delicious, easy-to-make, easy-to-keep Chinese confinement dish for any postpartum mother.

    What’s involved?

    Prep time: 15 mins

    Cook time: 45 mins

    Total time: 60 mins

    Serves: 4

    Ingredients
    • 20 fresh (or frozen) chicken feet, nails cut off
    • 10 fresh chicken wings
    • 3/4 cup of soy sauce
    • 4 cups of boiling (or hot) water
    • 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
    • 1 cinnamon stick
    • 2 pieces of star anise
    • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
    • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, sliced and peeled
    • 1 scallion, diced (optional)
    • White pepper (optional and recommended for Chinese Confinement)
    Cooking Instructions
    1. Cut off the nails of the chicken feet
    2. In a pot of boiling water, blanch the chicken feet and chicken wings for 3 minutes (to flush out the oil in the chicken feet)
    3. In a fresh pot, add all the ingredients together and let simmer for 45 minutes (or longer if you want it softer)
    4. Top with fresh scallions as needed
    5. Serve and enjoy!

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    Tea Name: Chinese orange monk fruit herbal tea Traditional Chinese Name: 止咳茶 (zhǐké chá) – direct translation here is “anti-cough” tea.  There are many teas that have earned the right to this label, so it’s just easier to use it as such instead of labeling all the...

    Green Papaya, Fish & Dried Octopus Soup

    Green Papaya, Fish & Dried Octopus Soup

    Green Papaya, Fish & Dried Octopus Soup

    Tea Name:

    Green Papaya, Fish & Dried Octopus Soup

    Chinese Name: 

    木瓜魚湯 (mù gua yú tāng)

    Nature:  Warming 

    Taste:  Sweet

    For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.

    A popular and very common soup for confinement, but not limited to this special group of ladies. For confinement, you must use GREEN papaya (ie: raw, raw, raw – smoking green). The dried octopus helps in milk production as well as adding some flavor to the soup. Use small fish where possible (to limit the exposure to mercury) and setting the soup overnight in a thermal pot really helps bring out the flavors. You can make a big pot and drink for about 2-3 days (while reheating it). This soup generates a very rich, milky broth that is super nutritious, delicious and suitable for the whole family. Another key ingredient for confinement is the ginger – don’t discount the power of ginger!

    Green papaya is an amazing antioxidant and has anti-inflammatory properties that strengthens the spleen, counteracts dampness, and supports circulation.  Green papaya is also amazing in removing toxins and kills free radical particles from the body (hence the anti-oxidant and anti-aging).  While it’s amazing in soups, it’s not quite so sweet as their red family members and sometimes carries a tart and sweet taste together.  You’ll find this ingredient in salads a lot as well!  But I do love eating it as part of the soup and meal!

     

     

     

    What’s involved?
    Prep time: 15 mins

    Cook time: 1 hour 30 mins

    Total time: 1 hour 45 mins

    Serves: 8 bowls of soup

    Ingredients
    Cooking Instructions
    1. Cut and soak the octopus in a bowl of warm water
    2. Thoroughly wash and clean the fish
    3. In a shallow pan on medium heat, add oil and ginger and when the oil is hot, add fish
    4. Fry the fish with the ginger on both sides until golden brown
    5. Remove from stove to let cool
    6. Boil your soup water
    7. Wash and peel papaya skin, cut into large edible portions
    8. When the water boils, add in fish (inside a soup baggie to prevent the bones from disintegrating into the soup), fried ginger, octopus and papaya
    9. Boil on medium heat for 1.5 hours
    10. Put into a thermal pot to keep warm or for re-boil later

    Tips for this soup:

    • Be sure to use smaller fish (to reduce the amount of mercury in the soup).  Larger fish tend to have more mercury.
    • Be sure to use a soup bag if you’re using fish in your soups.  I’ll usually pan-fry and then drop that into a fine mesh soup bag so that one, clean up is super easy, and two, the bones don’t disintegrate all over the soup.  Some people do love eating the fish as part of the meal, so you can always extract that directly from the soup.
    • Optional to keep the papaya skin on as well so that the papaya itself doesn’t soften and disintegrate too much

     

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    Wood Ear & Red Dates Tea

    Wood Ear & Red Dates Tea

    Wood Ear & Red Dates Tea

    Soup Name:

    Wood Ear & Red Dates Tea

    Chinese Name:

    木耳红枣茶 (mu er hóng zǎo chá)

    This tea is warming in nature and sweet to taste.

     

    For more videos, visit us on YouTube.

    This warming tea has so many amazing purposes!  

    The key highlight of this tea is the wood ear.  Wood ear in Traditional Chinese Medicine is known to reduce hypertension (lower blood pressure), support blood flow and circulation, tonifies and nourishes the blood and Qi, and alleviates coughs, moistening the lungs and removing phlegm.  

    To make this super potent, after you boil the tea, remove the wood ear and slice into small pieces and serve as a snack (or with the tea).

    I’ve also made wood ear salads, which allows you to still consume wood ears with more diversity in your diet!

     

    For post partum:

    This tea I drank as a confinement tea and within the first 0-5 days of confinement to help eliminate the lochia. It’s a simple tea with 3 ingredients (the meat is optional if you’re vegetarian) and very easy to make. It’s a sweet, slightly tart tea and must be drank hot/warm. It’s one of the better tasting teas I know available for confinement! You can boil a whole big batch for 5 days worth, refrigerate and then reheat when needed or boil fresh batches everyday. It is recommended to drink 1-2 glasses a day (depending if you’ve got other teas or soups already filling your tummy!). Do not add additives like sugar or salt. Keep it clean, light and natural.

    What’s involved?

    Prep time: 15 mins

    Cook time: 90 mins

    Total time: 1 hour 45 mins

    Serves: 3 cups of tea

    Ingredients
    Cooking Instructions
    1. Soak your dates and wood ear for 10-15 minutes in cool water
    2. Boil your soup or tea water
    3. When the water boils, add all the ingredients together and boil on a medium boil (covered) for 1.5 hours
    4. Serve hot/warm directly as is

    Some tips!

    • You can pre-soak the wood ear first thing in the morning.  This will soften until you need to boil them.
    • Be sure to buy and use pitted red dates as the seeds are quite fiery (not in a good way).  Some red dates come pre-seeded, but if not, you can use a sharp knife and remove them or halve them first and remove.

    For videos, visit us on YouTube.

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