Soup Name: Papaya, Snow Fungus and Red Dates in Pork Broth

Traditional Chinese Name: 木瓜雪耳豬展湯 (mù gua xuě ěr zhū zhǎn tāng)

Introduction:

This is an easy to make, nutritious soup that is packed full of Vitamin C and beta-carotene.  It is deliciously sweet and refreshing and ideal for autumn or winter days.  You can use chicken to make it more warm and also add a variety of other ingredients to make it a meal.

What ingredients are required?

1 pound fresh pork shank
2 large fresh papaya, cubed
2 whole dried snow fungus, cored and quartered
10 pitted red dates
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. In a separate pot of boiling water, blanch pork shank for 5 minutes, set aside and cool
  3. Boil your soup water
  4. Wash and cut papaya into large edible cubes
  5. Using scissors, cut out the middle of the snow fungus (the hardest part) and cut the other portions into edibles pieces
  6. When your soup water boils, add pork shank, snow fungus, papaya and dates
  7. Boil on high for 30 minutes and reduce to medium heat for another hour
  8. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Excellent source of vitamin A, C and beta-carotene
  • Excellent source of collagen (from the snow fungus)
  • Not too much fat since pork shank is being used

Any precautions?

  • Be sure to buy snow fungus from a reputable source
  • The longer you boil the now fungus, the thicker the soup gets (because the collagen like substance slowly dissolves into the soup), this is really according to preference