New milestone of 100K pageviews per month!

I just want to happily broadcast that TheChineseSoupLady.com is now enjoying (for the first time) over 100K (yes, one hundred thousand) pageviews per month with October 2011 being the first month and November steadily on target to go beyond that!

I’ve taken a screen shot of the statpress plugin for my blog from my admin panel and was thrilled to see the stats today while posting a new soup.  I don’t have that much time these days to religiously follow the statistics, but it is always a pleasant surprise to see the statistics improving steadily (in every way).  I am still crunching away at trying to get my cookbook published and am happy to update that I have signed with an agent in the US.  We will shortly be reaching out to publishers to cast my net and see where the voyage will take me.

In all honesty, I didn’t realize that with 1 single passion, some free time, and a load of perseverance, that I would be where I am today.  Thank you to my supporters and readers.  Thank you to my family for helping me realize my dreams (in this arena) and this is the start of a great journey yet to be completed!!  WAHOO!!

Fresh Snow Pears in Chicken Soup with Snow Fungus

Soup Name: Fresh Snow Pears in Chicken Soup with Snow Fungus

Traditional Chinese Name: 雪梨雪耳雞湯 (xuě lí xuě ěr jī tāng)

Introduction:

This end of autumn and into winter soup is slightly sweet, not too cooling and is deliciously simple to make.  With only a handful of ingredients, it is an ideal soup for the whole family and will have your kids asking for more.  Add more pears to sweeten it, but you can also use the Chicken Herbal Soup base to start as well.

What ingredients are required?

chicken (whole), skinned and quartered
2 whole dried snow fungus, cored and quartered
4 fresh snow pears, halved and cored

2 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Rinse and soak dried snow fungus in a bowl of enough water to immerse it in for about an hour (or until soft)
  2. Clean and prepare the chicken
  3. Boil a pot of water to blanch the chicken in and when water boils, add in the chicken and boil for 2-3 minutes
  4. Drain and set aside
  5. Cut the soaked snow fungus into edible portions while discarding the core (which is usually very yellow and hard)
  6. Boil your soup water
  7. Prepare the snow pears by coring and halving (keeping the skin will prevent disintegration)
  8. Add all the ingredients together and boil on high for 30 minutes.  Reduce to a low boil for another hour.
  9. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Excellent source of collagen (from the snow fungus)
  • Naturally sweet and packed with Vitamin C
  • Helps nourish the lungs, assist with cough and soothe the throat

Any precautions?

  • Be sure to purchase snow fungus from a reputable source and rinse thoroughly before consumption

Simple Tomato Fish Soup

Soup Name: Simple Tomato Fish Soup
Traditional Chinese Name: 番茄魚湯 (fān qié yú tāng)

Introduction:

Tomatoes are the ideal partner in fish soups.  It helps alleviate some of the fishy scent as well as bring a sweet and slightly sour taste to the soup.  This soup is ideal for confinements and children (at least one year in age as tomatoes are considered too acidic to young children) and is very neutral and healthy.  There is virtually no fat in the soup and the broth is rich in flavor and nutrients.  It is a great soup base for other ingredients such as other vegetables (celery, onions, carrots, corn, pumpkin) or additives (chestnuts, water chestnuts).

What Ingredients are required?

4 medium-sized golden threadfin bream (or any other appropriate substitute)
3 tomatoes
3 potatoes

2 L of water
1 teaspoon of salt (to marinate the fish)
1 teaspoon of oil (to fry the fish)

How do I prepare it?

  1. After the fish is cleaned, wipe the fish with paper towels or a cloth to remove excess water
  2. Cover the fish with a small amount of salt (inside and out)
  3. Let it sit for an hour and then drain any water
  4. Peel and cut the potatoes and tomatoes
  5. OPTIONAL: Some people will prefer to fry the potatoes until they are crispy on the outside to prevent disintegration in the soup
  6. Start boiling your soup water
  7. In a pan, add oil and fry the ginger with the fish on low-medium heat (until the fish is completely cooked and the skin is a slightly browned)
  8. Put the fish into a soup bag and add to water
  9. Add all the ingredients
  10. Boil for at least an hour

Any benefits?

  • This neutral soup is ideal for confinements
  • It is also ideal for children (who are able to eat tomatoes)
  • It is highly nutritious, contains no fats and can be used as a soup base for noodles, macaronis and other dishes

Any precautions?

  • Be careful of disintegrated fish bones in the soup – although a filter or fish bag will help

Herbal Pork and Chestnuts Broth

Soup Name: Herbal Pork and Chestnuts Broth

Traditional Chinese Name: 清豬骨湯 (qīng zhū gǔ tāng)

Introduction:

This Chinese soup is a “warm” soup that is ideal for the incoming autumn and winter months.  It’s a bit warming, helps nourish the body and provides moisture as the dryer seasons roll around.  This is a soup that is an easy make (especially when you’re short on fresh fruits or vegetables) as most of the ingredients are dried.  It’s naturally sweet and with the addition of ginger slices, can be used for confinement.

What ingredients are required?

1 pound fresh pork shank
2 pieces of dried large snails or abalone
15 fresh chestnuts
5 honey dates
1 tablespoon of dried wolfberries
20 pieces of dried longan
5-6 pieces of dried Chinese yam
1 tablespoon of fox seeds
2 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Blanch the pork shank and dried snail or abalone in boiling water for 3-5 minutes
  2. Boil your soup water
  3. In the same pot you used to blanch the meat, boil the chestnuts for 8 minutes on high heat
  4. Pour the chestnuts into a strainer and while still hot, remove the outer peel and skin of the chestnuts (use a towel if necessary as it is really hot)
  5. When you soup water boils, add all the ingredients together
  6. Boil on high for 30 minutes and reduce to a medium boil for another hour
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Naturally sweet and packed with anti-oxidants
  • Snails help nourish the Yin and improve kidney functions and eye sight
  • Slightly warm and excellent for children and pregnancies
  • Contains ingredients that are readily available in the Chinese repertoire of soup ingredients

Any precautions?

  • Be sure to rinse all dried ingredients thorough (especially fox nuts as they are highly processed)


Bamboo and Water Chestnut Pork Soup

Soup Name: Bamboo and Water Chestnut Pork Soup

Traditional Chinese Name: 竹子馬蹄豬湯 (Zhú mati zhū tāng)

Introduction:

This cooling soup is not only great for spring and summer months, but is also a tasty treat thanks to the natural sweetness of the ingredients.  The soft carrots, chewy bamboo and crunchy water chestnuts lend a surprising and fun blend of textures to this soup.  This is a relatively light soup that is easy to make and, although slightly cooling, is great for children.

What ingredients are required?

1 pound fresh pork shank
2 large fresh carrots, cut into large pieces
15 water chestnuts, washed and peeled
2 large fresh bamboo shoots, cut into slices
2 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Blanch your pork shank in boiling water for 5 minutes, drain and set aside
  2. In a large pot, start boiling your soup water
  3. Wash and prepare the carrots, water chestnuts and bamboo shoots
  4. When soup water boils, add all the ingredients together
  5. Boil on high for 30 minutes and reduce to low heat and simmer for another 2 hours
  6. Serve and enjoy!  Salt if necessary

Any benefits?

  • Excellent source of protein and vitamins
  • Easy to make soup (but only if you buy fresh bamboo.  Otherwise, preparing the fresh bamboo will take some time)
  • Soup is ideal for hot summers and mildly cooling to relieve heatiness in the body
  • Water chestnuts are cooling and are said to relieve coughs
  • Bamboo shoots are an excellent source of fiber, potassium and are high in antioxidants
  • A sweet soup and great for children

Any precautions?

  • Water chestnuts are cooling and it is recommended that pregnant women take caution when consuming