Spinach

Fresh spinach

Ingredient Name:  Fresh Spinach

Traditional Chinese Name: 菠菜 (bō cài)

What is this?

  • A dark green, leafy vegetable that is used in all cuisines around the world
  • Spinach can be eaten cooked or raw
  • There are variants of the spinach which are available in the wet mart or your local supermarket, but in general they have large leaves and a shorter, stumpier stem (all parts are edible)
  • In Chinese cuisine, spinach is more commonly cooked as a vegetable dish versus a soup dish, but on occasions you will find spinach used in stews
  • Spinach does leave a grainier taste in your mouth (both in dishes and soups)

How do I prepare it?

  • Rinse well in cool water removing all debris
  • To keep the spinach fresh and crisp, store in the fridge after rinsing (prior to use)

Where can I buy this?

  • Most supermarkets will carry this

What is the cost?

  • In Hong Kong, 1 catty costs around $15 HKD
  • The cost will vary depending on whether it’s organic, the make of spinach and how in season they are in general at the time of purchase

Any benefits?

  • Spinach is extremely high in nutritional value and is rich in iron, Calcium C and antioxidants (great for fighting free radicals who increase signs of aging)
  • This vegetable is also an excellent source of fibre
  • Spinach improves blood glucose levels, lowers the risk of cancer, lowers blood pressure, and improving bone health

Any precautions?

  • Spinach is known to increase gout, so caution should be taken with those who have gout

 

Spinach and Water Chestnuts in Chicken Broth

Spinach and Water Chestnuts in Chicken Broth

Spinach and Water Chestnuts in Chicken Broth

Soup Name:

Spinach and Water Chestnuts in Chicken Broth

Traditional Chinese Name:

菠菜馬蹄雞湯 (bō cài tāng mǎ tí jī tāng)

This soup is slightly cooling in nature and sweet to taste.

 

For videos, visit us on YouTube.

This is a variation on a restaurant-styled spinach soup I had at a Chinese restaurant. In their version, the spinach was less dense and more coarse and it was called a “gung” in Cantonese – meaning a thick stew type of soup. I wanted something lighter, healthier for the kids and lighter on the corn starch, so kind of made this up. It turned out to be delicious and the water chestnuts added a refreshing and crunchy texture that I loved! For the vegetarian version, use vegetable broth instead.

What’s involved?

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 15 mins

Total time: 30 mins

Serves: 4-6 bowls

For videos, visit us on YouTube.

Benefits

  • This soup is extremely high in iron, calcium and antioxidants (that help kill free radicals and slow down the sign of aging).
  • It’s suitable for the whole family.
  • It’s an easy and quick soup that you can whip up in less than half an hour.

Ingredients
  • 3 cloves of fresh garlic, finely diced
  • 1/2 fresh white onion, finely chopped
  • 6 bunches of fresh spinach, chopped
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 2 cups of water
  • 10 fresh water chestnuts, peeled
Cooking Instructions
  1. Finely chop both onions and garlic
  2. In your soup pot, add a teaspoon of cooking oil and fry garlic and onions until the onions are caramelized
  3. Throw in the chopped spinach and cook for another 5 minutes while continuously stirring
  4. Add in chicken broth and water
  5. Boil on medium for another 10 minutes (or until boiling)
  6. Remove from heat and using a hand blender, blend the soup until it runs smooth
  7. In a pot of hot water, boil the peeled water chestnuts for 5 minutes
  8. When ready, remove and finely chop the water chestnuts
  9. Sprinkle the water chestnuts on top of the soup and serve!

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