How to make a Japanese-inspired Pork Meatball in Miso One Pot Dinner Soup

How to make a Japanese-inspired Pork Meatball in Miso One Pot Dinner Soup

How to make a Japanese-inspired Pork Meatball in Miso One Pot Dinner Soup

Soup Name:

Delicious One Pot Vegetable Vermicelli Soup for Dinner.  Literal translation from Chinese is “Mixed vegetables vermicelli pot soup”. 

For this one, I went with pork meatballs and a Miso butter soup base.

Traditional Chinese Name:

雜菜粉絲鍋湯 (zá cài fěnsī guō tāng)

Nature:  Neutral

Taste: Sweet and savory

For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.

 

For those days when you’re being time efficient…

The best thing about one-pot dinners is that it’s literally in one pot.  Cooked, served, cleaned!

Here’s the concept of the one-pot soup dinner.  You’ll need to design:

  • The soup base (see below for options)
  • The toppings

There are a variety of soup bases you can use for one-pot soup dinners:

 

Tonight’s dinner was DELICIOUS!  The meatballs were a nice added protein to the soup, topped with a silky tofu that everyone loved.  The green bean vermicelli functions as noodles, and there are plenty of green vegetables with the bean sprouts, napa cabbage, and broccoli.  So yummy!  We had enough for leftovers

What’s involved?

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 30 minutes 

Total time: 40 mins

Serves: 8 bowls

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup of dried shrimp
  • 3 slices of fresh ginger
  • 1 pound of fresh ground pork
  • 1 bunch of fresh enoki mushrooms, diced
  • 1 teaspoon of sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons of soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon of white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 whole large napa cabbage, sliced
  • 1 head crown broccoli
  • 2 bundles of dried green bean vermicelli
  • 1 bunch of fresh bean sprouts
  • 1 pack of fresh soft silken tofu 
  • 10 cups of water
  • 1 tablespoon of miso paste
  • 1 teaspoon of butter
  • green onions for garnish

Cooking Instructions

  1. In a bowl, take out your dried green bean vermicelli and add in cold water, ensuring it’s completely covered and let it soak (to soften) – this step is optional and will just allow the vermicelli to cook faster.
  2. In your soup pot, add a bit of oil and pan fry the dried shrimp and fresh ginger slices on medium heat until fragrant and slightly golden brown
  3. Add in your 10 cups of soup water, cover, turn on to high heat and let that come to a boil
  4. In a separate bowl, mix in the ground pork, finely chopped enoki mushrooms, garlic salt, soy sauce, sesame oil, white pepper, and egg until fully combined.  Then roll out into 1.5 inch in diameter meatballs (or whatever size works for your family – huge meatballs are also fun, while baby ones are great for smaller kids).
  5. Once the soup water boils, drop in your meatballs gently into the boiling water and then cover and let that come to a boil again on high heat.
  6. Once the soup water is boiling, add in all the vegetables, stacking them gently into the water.
  7. You can also add in your vermicelli at this time, ensuring they are completely submerged into the soup water.
  8. Cover and allow that to boil on medium heat for 5 minutes.
  9. Gently layer on top the silken tofu.  This can actually rest on top of the vegetables and not be fully submerged.  When you cover it, it will be like steaming the tofu, so it will be cooked anyways.  Cover and boil for another 5 minutes.
  10. At this point, I will drop in my miso paste and butter and cover again for another 2 minutes on boiling.  This will allow the butter to melt and some of the miso to dissolve, but you can also swish it around before covering.
  11. Garnish with fresh green onions
  12. Serve and enjoy!

Tips for making this soup:

  • For a more neutral soup, use neutral vegetables (both in nature and in taste) such as leafy greens like napa cabbage, cabbage, broccoli, gai lan, choy sum
  • Vegetables such as watercress are more cooling and spinach as a particular unique taste that may throw off the soup
  • Add in a few Chinese herbs of choice that are slightly more warm (such as dried red dates, dried longans, even 1 piece of dong quai would be amazing!)
  • Chop your root vegetables thin like the potatoes and white radish.  It makes it easier to cook and eat.  This is literally a quick boil soup!  So you want your ingredients to cook quickly and thoroughly.
  • Get creative with the vegetable base!
  • Vermicelli and vegetables go last.  They cook really fast!

For videos, visit us on YouTube. 

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Simple Ground Beef Congee for Sick Tummies…

Simple Ground Beef Congee for Sick Tummies…

Simple Ground Beef Congee for Sick Tummies…

Soup Name: Simple Ground Beef Congee

Traditional Chinese Name: 碎牛肉粥 (suì niú ròu zhōu)

Taste:  Savory

Nature: Slightly warm

For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.

My youngest, this morning, woke up and told me her stomach wasn’t feeling well.  I usually keep frozen ground beef in meal portions in the freezer, so it was easy to take one pack out and defrost for this easy congee meal!  

My basic Chinese kitchen pantry also has dried conpoy as a staple and I usually do also keep dried shrimp on the side (which are great additions to Chinese dishes such as stir fry and steamed dishes).  

 

OH THE TOPPINGS!

The amazing thing about plain congee is how you can have a host of toppings available for any taste, condition, discerning critic (or congee food taster)!

Here are some of the interesting ones I’m using today:

 

  • Preserved sweet and sour cucumbers (these come in jars which you can purchase in the supermarket).  They are slightly sweet and slightly tart and super appetizing with rice or congee!
  • Dried seaweed.  Adds a bit of savory crunch!
  • Kimchi.  I know, it’s not very Chinese of me, but I couldn’t help myself!  It was calling to me!
  • Preserved savory olives.  This is a very Chiu Chou-styled topping and is commonly served with plain white congee.  It’s part of my Chiu Chou background that I have jars and jars of these in my pantry!
  • Sesame seeds – both black and white.  This is a great warming ingredient that is both flavourful and adds a different texture!
  • Sesame oil – drizzle a small portion on top and it makes the congee extra fragrant!
  • Fresh green onions.  A staple topping that provides a fresh twist! 

What’s involved?

Prep time: 5 mins

Cook time: 30 mins+

Total time: 35 mins+

Serves: 6 bowls

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of white rice (my kids like using sushi rice for congee sometimes or I blend long grain and sushi rice)

  • 8 cups of water

  • 10 small dried scallops or conpoys

  • 10 dried shrimp
  • 250g of lean ground beef

  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of white pepper
  • sliced ginger optional
  • fresh green onions optional
  • Your fine selection of congee toppings (I have many in my pantry and fridge just because that’s how I roll)

Cooking Instructions

  1. Add a bit of cooking oil to your cooking pot and fry on medium heat ginger, dried scallops and shrimp, until slightly browned
  2. Add in ground beef and stir fry until cooked
  3. Add in 2 cups of white rice and stir until mixed
  4. Pour in water
  5. Cover and bring to a full boil and then reduce heat to medium for another 30 minutes or until rice soft and mushy
  6. Add in salt and white pepper, garnish and serve!

EQUIPMENT USED

To answer your questions on what equipment I'm using, I've built a section here where you can find and explore what I'm using to make soups.  Ingredients are a little harder, but I will do my best as I source them around.  However, you can always message me on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, or Facebook, and I will reply and try to point you in some direction!  

A great help for fish or small bones in soups, including small ingredients such as barley, fox nuts, spices just to keep everything together.

A MUST HAVE in the kitchen!  Energy saving, cost effective, and perfect for busy chefs!  Check out my article here that explains it.

Another MUST HAVE in the kitchen for soups!  It's so fine that it will scoop off the top oil and foam layer when using meats in your soup!

I use these types of stove top safe tea pots to make most of my herbal teas!

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Turn leftover rice into a delicious, warming congee with shrimp and yams

Turn leftover rice into a delicious, warming congee with shrimp and yams

Turn leftover rice into a delicious, warming congee with shrimp and yams

Soup Name:

Shrimp Congee with Fresh Yams and Lettuce

Traditional Chinese Name:

蝦粥 (xiā zhōu)

Nature: Neutral

Taste: Sweet 

For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube. 

Want something easy?  Want something delicious?

This is the perfect lunch to make in 30 minutes with leftover rice.  Instead of going the traditional fried rice route (which I usually do), I went with a delicious, warming, and kind of a random mix of ingredients that blended nicely.

The key is the congee base.  I defrosted 10 shelled shrimp using the their creamy heads as the flavour base.  And then added ingredients I found in the fridge that would go nicely.

It was super easy to make and so yummy!  I had about 2 bowls of leftover rice in the fridge, so it was just perfect because I pretty much grazed on it from lunch until dinner!

 

What’s involved?

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 30 minutes 

Total time: 40 mins

Serves: 6 bowls (2 people portion)

Ingredients

  • 10 shelled shrimp, keeping the heads

  • 5 pieces of garlic, diced
  • 1 yam, peeled and cubed
  • Some lettuce (I used half a romaine)
  • Fresh green onions
  • 2 bowls of leftover white rice
  • 7 cups of water
  • Salt to taste

Cooking Instructions

  1. Remove the heads of the shrimp and in your pot, add some oil and diced garlic and saute on medium heat until fragrant
  2. Deshell and devein your shrimp and marinate with a bit of soy sauce, sesame oil, and white pepper to taste
  3. Add in 7 cups of cold water and cover, allowing that to come to a boil
  4. Once that boils, scoop out the shrimp heads and foam (the garlic will also come with it, which is OK)
  5. Add in your leftover rice and cubed yam.  Cover and reduce to a low-medium heat and let that boil for 15 minutes.
  6. Now add in your shrimp and diced lettuce.  Cover and boil for 5 minutes.
  7. Once it all boils nicely, mix it around and garnish with fresh green onions.
  8. Serve and enjoy!
  9. Salt as needed.

Tips for making this congee:

  • The shrimp heads are key in this congee, which is what creates that delicious congee base
  • I tried to blend ingredients that would go nicely with the shrimp flavour (so you can get creative here).  Carrots, potatoes, or onions would also compliment.  [I had tofu in my fridge and thought about adding that with seaweed, but to be honest, not sure seaweed would go with this blend!]
  • It’s quick boil because the rice is already cooked (which is typically the longest to cook since it’s raw, but that’s why this congee can be made in 30 minutes)
  • Use small, diced cuts for quick boil soups or congee (they cook faster)

For videos, visit us on YouTube. 

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Tea Name: Vegetarian Green and White Radish and Carrots Chinese Herbal Soup Packs Traditional Chinese Name: 紅青蘿蔔湯 (hóng qing luóbo tang). Literal translation is "red pale radish soup".  The red means the carrots (usually), the pale means the green radish (usually),...

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Tea Name: Spleen strengthening damp removing herbal tea Traditional Chinese Name: 健脾祛濕茶 (jiàn pí qū shī chá) – direct translation here is “spleen strength remove damp” tea.  This is also quite a generic name in terms of the function of the tea rather than the...

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Sweet and sour snow fungus and cucumber salad

Sweet and sour snow fungus and cucumber salad

Sweet and sour snow fungus and cucumber salad

Tea Name:

Sweet and sour snow fungus and cucumber salad (with garlic and red dates and goji berries) in a tart delightful mirin vinegrette dressing

Nature:  Slightly warming (due to the garlic, red dates, and vinegar)

Taste: Sweet and sour

For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.

Making snow fungus 2-ways the other day for dinner.  Since I was soaking one for my soup, I decided to economize my efforts and soak another to make a delicious, tart and sweet appetizer.

Why not more snow fungus?  This powerhouse Chinese herb is amazing at nourishing the yin in the lungs and helps retain moisture and collagen!  (YEAH, did someone say COLLAGEN?).  LOL.  Yah, it’s known to be the “poor man’s” version of bird’s nest, which helps to keep the skin firm and glowing.  In the end, snow fungus is just a mushroom.

I always keep a stash of these in my pantry now because they are perfect for soups, stews, salads, desserts, and even stir fried!  Seriously, get experimental and try it!

 

What’s involved?
 Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: No cooking needed

Total time: 15 mins

Serves: 5 cups (or servings)

Ingredients

The sauce:

 

  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of mirin
  • 1 tablespoon of white vinegar
  • 3 teaspoons of white sugar
Cooking Instructions
  1. Soak the snow fungus in cool water for at least 10 minutes, ensuring it’s fully covered.  You can check out this video on how to prepare snow fungus.
  2. Wash and dice half a cucumber, keeping the skin on
  3. Dice all the garlic
  4. Once the snow fungus is fully bloomed and relatively soft and squishy, using scissors or a knife, remove the hard orange middle (cut as best as you can as this part is tougher to eat)
  5. Dice the snow fungus into bite-sized pieces
  6. Add in all the ingredients together in a mixing bowl and give it a good mix, ensuring all the sauce covers all parts of the salad
  7. Chill and serve.  Enjoy!

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Tea Name: Apple Cinnamon Chinese Herbal Tea for Eliminating Damp-Wind and Damp-Heat Traditional Chinese Name: 蘋果祛濕茶 (píng guǒ qū shī chá) – direct translation here is “apple remove damp” tea. There are many damp removal Chinese herbal teas and this one blends flavours...

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Tea Name: Vegetarian Green and White Radish and Carrots Chinese Herbal Soup Packs Traditional Chinese Name: 紅青蘿蔔湯 (hóng qing luóbo tang). Literal translation is "red pale radish soup".  The red means the carrots (usually), the pale means the green radish (usually),...

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Tea Name: Warming Healing Mandarin Chinese Herbal Tea Traditional Chinese Name: 保暖茶 (bǎo nuǎn chá) – direct translation here is “keep warm tea”. This is a very generic name for teas that keep you warm. Nature:  Warming Taste: Sweet and slightly bitter (You can read...

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Tea Name: Apple Cinnamon Chinese Herbal Tea for Eliminating Damp-Wind and Damp-Heat Traditional Chinese Name: 蘋果祛濕茶 (píng guǒ qū shī chá) – direct translation here is “apple remove damp” tea. There are many damp removal Chinese herbal teas and this one blends flavours...

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Soup Name: Cantonese-styled Tomato Fish Soup (with vegetables) Traditional Chinese Name: 番茄魚湯 (fān qié yú tāng). The literal translation of this is Tomato Fish Soup. However, this is such a generic name for the soup base (consisting usually of fish and tomatoes), but...

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Tea Name: Vegetarian Green and White Radish and Carrots Chinese Herbal Soup Packs Traditional Chinese Name: 紅青蘿蔔湯 (hóng qing luóbo tang). Literal translation is "red pale radish soup".  The red means the carrots (usually), the pale means the green radish (usually),...

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Tea Name: Spleen strengthening damp removing herbal tea Traditional Chinese Name: 健脾祛濕茶 (jiàn pí qū shī chá) – direct translation here is “spleen strength remove damp” tea.  This is also quite a generic name in terms of the function of the tea rather than the...

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Easy 1-2-3 Chicken Congee

Easy 1-2-3 Chicken Congee

Easy 1-2-3 Chicken Congee

Soup Name:

Easy 1-2-3 Chicken Congee (using frozen chicken thighs)

Traditional Chinese Name粥 (zhōu)

Taste:  Savory and sweet

Nature: Slightly warm

For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.

My daughter… one morning told me she wasn’t feeling well, particularly in the stomach and really wanted congee.  This is why I always keep a few chicken thighs (and other various meats) frozen in my freezer.  It’s for these days where I could use them for a quick 1-2-3 chicken congee, ready in about 2 hours (or more depending on how much notice or time you have).

OH THE TOPPINGS!

The amazing thing about plain congee is how you can have a host of toppings available for any taste, condition, discerning critic (or congee food taster)!

Here are some of the interesting ones I’m using today:

 

  • Preserved sweet and sour cucumbers (these come in jars which you can purchase in the supermarket).  They are slightly sweet and slightly tart and super appetizing with rice or congee!
  • Dried seaweed.  Adds a bit of savory crunch!
  • Kimchi.  I know, it’s not very Chinese of me, but I couldn’t help myself!  It was calling to me!
  • Preserved savory olives.  This is a very Chiu Chou-styled topping and is commonly served with plain white congee.  It’s part of my Chiu Chou background that I have jars and jars of these in my pantry!
  • Fresh green onions.  A staple topping that provides a fresh twist! 

What’s involved?

Prep time: 5 mins

Cook time: 60 mins+

Total time: 65 mins+

Serves: 8 bowls

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of white rice (my kids like using sushi rice for congee sometimes or I blend long grain and sushi rice)

  • 2.5 L of water

  • 6-7 dried scallops or conpoys

  • 2-3 frozen chicken thighs

  • Your fine selection of congee toppings (I have many in my pantry and fridge just because that’s how I roll)

Cooking Instructions

  1. Take out your frozen chicken thighs from the freezer.  No defrost needed.
  2. In your congee or soup pot, add in the rice, frozen chicken thighs, dried conpoys, and water
  3. Boil on high heat for about 20 minutes, or until the water begins to dance with bubbles
  4. Gently stir the pot to ensure that the rice isn’t sticking to the bottom of the pot
  5. At this point, you can reduce the boil to a medium boil (so the water doesn’t spill over) and boil for another 1-2 hours depending on how much time you have.  
  6. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking
  7. Serve, top with your favourite toppings, enjoy!

EQUIPMENT USED

To answer your questions on what equipment I'm using, I've built a section here where you can find and explore what I'm using to make soups.  Ingredients are a little harder, but I will do my best as I source them around.  However, you can always message me on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, or Facebook, and I will reply and try to point you in some direction!  

A great help for fish or small bones in soups, including small ingredients such as barley, fox nuts, spices just to keep everything together.

A MUST HAVE in the kitchen!  Energy saving, cost effective, and perfect for busy chefs!  Check out my article here that explains it.

Another MUST HAVE in the kitchen for soups!  It's so fine that it will scoop off the top oil and foam layer when using meats in your soup!

I use these types of stove top safe tea pots to make most of my herbal teas!

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Japanese Inspired Vinaigrette (for Beef Carpaccio or Salad)

Japanese Inspired Vinaigrette (for Beef Carpaccio or Salad)

Japanese Inspired Vinaigrette (for Beef Carpaccio or Salad)

Sauce Name:

Japanese inspired vinaigrette (for beef carpaccio or salads or as an appetizers)

Nature:  Warm (which is primarily the vinegar)

Taste:  Sour and bitter and slightly sweet

Targets: Liver and stomach

 

For more videos, you can follow us on YouTube.

Yes!  Finally, a sauce!  I’ve been wanting to venture into this space for some time.  There is also huge benefits in understanding the benefits of the foods we consume from a Traditional Chinese Medicine perspective, not only in soups!

This sauce was inspired as a fusion for some boneless beef short ribs that I bought at the Korean supermarket over the weekend.  I also ended up flash frying the meat to get to a medium-rare texture because the kids don’t usually eat raw beef, so this was the compromise!  It turned out amazing! 

You can view the whole video of the dish here, including the sauce (which I think is the hero of the dish!)

 

I substituted the traditional red wine vinegars for sushi vinegar (and white vinegar because the sushi vinegar is sweet and thick) and mirin (could have also used yuzhu, will try next time!) and added half a lemon.  This balance with the brown sugar created a beautiful balance between tart and sweet.  It was truly a masterpiece!

I would suggest to taste test as well to really get to the balance you like! 

What’s involved?

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 5 mins

Total time: 20 mins

Serves: 8 people as appetizer dish (with 4 pieces each)

Ingredients
  • 32 x pieces of 1 cm thick sliced boneless beef short ribs (use the pieces that are marbling for best effect, the type you use for Korean bbq!)
  • Pre-made Korean snow pear and apple bbq marinade
  • 1 fresh white onion
  • 4 tablespoons of sushi vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of mirin
  • 1 tablespoon of sweet soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of white vinegar
  • 1.5 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • half a lemon
  • fresh green onions as garnish

Note:  This portion makes enough for 2 plates.  I actually used half and kept half for a smoked salmon appetizer

     

    Cooking Instructions
    1. Thinly slice your white onion using a sharp knife (or a slicing machine).
    2. In a mixing bowl, add in your sushi vinegar, mirin, sweet soy sauce, white vinegar, and brown sugar.  Mix well until the sugar is completely dissolved.
    3. In a ceramic bowl, put in the onions and pour the sauce over, completely submerging the onions and then squeeze in half a lemon.
    4. Cover with a wrap and refrigerate for later use
    5. Marinate your beef short ribs with the Korean snow pear and apple marinade for 10 minutes
    6. In a shallow pan, add a bit of oil, turn on high heat and once the pan is sufficiently hot, lay out the beef short ribs and flip immediately in the order you set them down and then remove right away from the pan (it will continue to cook a bit, but will become a beautiful medium rare)
    7. Plate and add your vinaigrette sauce and onions on top and then top with chopped green onions
    8. Serve and enjoy!
    9. EVEN BETTER…. I save a few pieces and left that in the fridge to consume the day after and it was even more amazing served as a cold dish!  Similar to raw beef carpaccio, this medium-rare version was simply sublime!!  My kids loved it!

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    FOLLOW US AND SHARE.

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