Night Blooming Cereus and Figs in Pork Broth

Soup Name: Night Blooming Cereus and Figs in Pork Broth

Traditional Chinese Name: 霸王花無花果瘦肉湯 (bà wáng huā wú huā guǒ shòu ròu tāng)

Introduction:

This unique soup is ideal for removing heaty phlegm and nourishing the lungs.  It is best for those with pathological heat and fire in their bodies, which makes it ideal to be consumed at the beginning of the autumn season to help clear heatiness from the body from the summer.  The soup is slightly sweet, very refreshing and creates a clear broth that is easy to drink – however it is an old fire soup and requires quite a length of time to boil.

What ingredients are required?

1 pound fresh pork shank
40 g dried night blooming cereus
5 dried figs
5 honey dates
20 g apricot kernals
2-3 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Soak night blooming cereus in water for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Boil your soup water
  3. In a separate pot of boiling water, blanch pork shank for 5 minutes.  Drain and set aside.
  4. Rinse night blooming cereus in running water (to remove all the bugs)
  5. When soup water boils, add all the ingredients together.
  6. Boil on high for 30 minutes and reduce to low heat and simmer for another 3 hours.
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Excellent in removing heat from the body
  • Helps nourish and moisturize lungs
  • Naturally sweet soup

Any precautions?

  • Recommended to use a thermal pot instead of boiling the soup for the whole 3 hours
  • Rinse night blooming cereus thoroughly as they have many bugs
  • Relatively cooling soup to be consumed cautiously by menstruating women or women in their first trimester of pregnancy (as it may cause contractions)

Snow Pears, Chayotes and Seabed Coconut in Pork Broth

Snow pear Chayotes in Pork Broth

Snow pear Chayotes in Pork Broth

Soup Name: Snow Pears, Chayotes and Seabed Coconut in Pork Broth

Traditional Chinese Name: 雪梨合掌瓜湯 (xuě lí hup jeung gwa tāng)

Introduction:
A mildly cooling soup that helps relieve heatiness, assist in cough and is naturally sweet.  It’s great for kids, easy to make and contains all natural ingredients.  You can use chicken meat with this instead of pork bones (or pork shank).  If you can’t get fresh (or frozen) seabed coconut, the dried version is sufficient (although not as sweet, so you can substitute additional snow pears).

What Ingredients are required?

1 pound of fresh pork bones
3 fresh chayotes, quartered and cored
5 fresh seabed coconuts, halved
4 fresh snow pears, halved and cored
1 tablespoon of apricot kernels
2-3 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Boil your soup water
  2. Boil another pot of water to blanch your pork bones (blanch in boiling water for 5 minutes)
  3. Remove pork bones from water and set aside
  4. Rinse in warm water, core both chayotes and snow pears – cut both into large, edible portions
  5. Rinse seabed coconut in warm water and halve
  6. When soup water boils, add pork bones, chayotes, snow pears, seabed coconut and apricot kernals
  7. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes and reduce to a simmer for another hour

Any benefits?

  • Mildly cool and appropriate for children
  • Naturally sweet and nutritious

 

Any precautions?

  • Pork bone soups often do produce quite a big of fat (over pork shank), so be sure to use an oil scooper to remove the fat before serving

Onion and Corn in Chicken Soup

Soup Name: Onion and Corn in Chicken Soup

Chinese Name 洋蔥 玉米湯 (yáng cōng yù mǐ tāng)

Introduction:

This soup creation is courtesy of my mother.  She was here visiting Hong Kong and made this soup for me and it was absolutely delicious!  Who would have thought that onions and corn mixed in the simplest of combination would be so tasty, naturally sweet and easy to drink?  I think it is also the addition of the lily bulbs that created the rich, sweetness of the soup.  I recommend all families try this soup.  It is neutral for all to drink, contains all natural ingredients and is super, duper easy to make!  I also kept this soup over a period of 2 days and found the longer it sat, the sweeter it became – just be sure to boil your soup each time and when not drinking it, boil it and keep it covered as not to let any bacteria in if keeping overnight.

What Ingredients are required?

How do I prepare it?

  1. Start boiling your soup water
  2. Boil another pot of water to blanch the chicken
  3. Prepare chicken and blanch in boiling water
  4. Rinse onions, corn and lily bulb and cut into edible sizes
  5. When soup water boils, add all the ingredients together
  6. Boil on high for 30 minutes and reduce to boil for another 30 minutes
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Neutral soup for all to drink
  • Naturally sweet
  • Great source of antioxidants and source of sulfides which help reduce blood pressure

Any precautions?

  • Lily bulbs will disintegrate over a period of time and melt into the soup, naturally thickening it – take caution with small children when this does happen
  • Otherwise, no known precautions – so enjoy!

Watercress and Carrots in Fish Broth

Soup Name: Watercress and Carrots in Fish Broth

Chinese Name: 果西洋胡蘿蔔魚湯 (xī yáng cài hú luóbo yú tāng)

Introduction:

A great fish soup base with vegetables that can serve as a meal.  It’s not too common to make watercress with fish, but a tasty recommendation from my veggie vendor.  It’s great in assisting coughs and moisturizing the body in the dry autumn and winter months.  It’s also got minimal fat and ideal for children as well.   The one key thing that many people tell me about watercress soups is that you MUST add watercress to boiling water or else the watercress will be sour?  I have never actually tried it because I don’t want to spoil my soup, but if you happen to feel experimental or did it by accident, do share you experience and soup results!

What Ingredients are required?

How do I prepare it?

  1. Start boiling your soup water
  2. Wash your fish in warm water
  3. In a shallow pan, add sliced ginger and fry fish on medium heat until cooked on both sides
  4. When fish cools, put in a fish bag
  5. Cook for 5 minutes on both sides and set aside to cool when finished
  6. Rinse in warm water the apricot kernals, tangerine peel and fresh watercress
  7. Rinse carrots, peel, and cube
  8. When your soup water boils, add the bagged fish to the soup with the apricot kernals and tangerine peel
  9. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes and reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes
  10. Add fresh watercress to the soup and boil on high for another 10-15 minutes (or until watercress is at desired softness)
  11. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Excellent soup for the lungs to help relieve cough
  • Helps moisten the lungs and throat
  • This soup is said to help strengthen the lungs

Any precautions?

  • Be sure to use a soup bag when boiling soup with fish (to keep the bones together)
  • Add watercress to boiling water only or the vegetable will turn bitter if you add to cold water and then boil

Papaya Pork Soup

Soup Name: Papaya Pork Soup

Chinese Name: 木瓜湯 (mù gua tāng)

Introduction:

Putting fruit into Chinese soups adds a wonderful sweetness and texture.   Papaya is commonly used in either fish or pork-based soups.   This is a simple papaya pork soup that is quick and simple to make and great for children.  My own kids love to eat the soft and warm papaya fruit directly from the soup so this has become a common, nutritious soup we can make quickly and know they will enjoy.

What Ingredients are required?

How do I prepare it?

  1. Soak the apricot kernels and dried scallops in room temperature water for 30 minutes
  2. Peel and remove the seeds from the papaya and cut into large cubes
  3. Boil your soup water
  4. Blanch pork shank in a separate pot of boiling water
  5. Add in the above ingredients and bring to a boil
  6. Simmer for at least one hour until pork if soft
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • High in vitamin C and folate (from the papayas)
  • Neutral soup that is ideal for children and toddlers
  • Simple to make


Luo Han Guo in Watercress Soup

Soup Name: Luo Han Guo in Watercress Soup

Traditional Chinese Name: 羅漢果西洋菜湯 (luóhàn guǒ xī yáng cài tāng)

Introduction:
This soup is excellent for assisting in coughs and removing phelgm.  It also aids in providing moisture (with the chestnuts) to the body and lungs for those dry autumn and winter months.  It is considered a pretty sweet soup and ideal for all ages.

What Ingredients are required?

1 pound of fresh pork shank
1/2 dried luo han guo
1 tablespoon of  apricot kernals
15 whole raw chestnuts
2-3 bunches of fresh watercress
1 large piece of dried tangerine peel

2-3 L of water
1 teaspoon of salt (to marinate the pork)


How do I prepare it?

  • Pre-marinate the pork overnight with the salt (although this step is not necessary)
  • Boil your soup water
  • Blanch pork shank in a separate pot of boiling water
  • In another separate pot, boil chestnuts for 2-3 minutes.  Remove from water and peel while still hot (removing the outer and inner skin)
  • Half luo han guo and rinse in warm water
  • Wash and soak apricot kernals and tangerine peel in warm water
  • When the water boils, add all the ingredients together except the watercress (this should be added last because it will stay relatively crunchy before consumption)
  • Boil on high for thirty minutes and reduce to a simmer for another 1.5 hours (or use a thermal pot)
  • When almost ready to drink, re-boil and add in watercress.  Boil on high for 10 minutes (or until desired softness of watercress)
  • Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • An excellent soup to assist with coughs and loosening of phlegm
  • Ideal for dry autumn consumption as it helps moisten the lungs and body
  • Low in fat
  • Naturally sweet

Any precautions?

  • The luo han guo produces a very sweet and distinct taste that is subjective to the drinker
  • I would suggest trying half of a fruit on your first attempt and see if you like it, definitely do not add more than 1 fruit to a soup
  • The watercress, while considered a cooling vegetable, can be consumed in moderation if in early pregnancy (use less as a precaution)