Double-boiled Apple and Pear Chinese Herbal Soup

Double-boiled Apple and Pear Chinese Herbal Soup

Double-boiled Apple and Snow Pear Chinese Soup

Double-boiled Apple and Snow Pear Chinese Soup

My second project using the new double-boiler! I found a very simple, but delicious apple and pear Chinese soup with pork and chicken and Chinese herbs.  This is a pretty traditional Chinese soup and can be made both with or without double-boiling. The purpose of double-boiling is really to maintain density of the flavours and lock in (better than regular boiling) all that goodness. I’d almost argue that using a thermal pot is similar to double-boiling.  Double-boiled soups are normally made in the winter because they can be more potent and provide extra punch and warmth.  This soup is awesomely yummy! It is designed to help soothe and moisten the throat and lungs. Most Chinese double-boiled soups use both chicken and pork. Even if you use a silkie chicken, the Chinese will throw in a small piece of pork shank. This makes the soup very sweet and rich in flavours.

Soup Name:  Double-boiled Apple and Pear Chinese Herbal Soup

Traditional Chinese Soup Name: 蘋果雪梨燉雞湯 (píng guǒ xuě lí dùn jī tāng)

To see the full recipe, scroll down to skip my commentary.

For this recipe, you’ll need: A bunch of Chinese herbs (in mine, I have dried dates, dried longans, dried conpoys or scallops, dried Chinese yam, and wolfberries), some pork, a whole chicken, fuji apples, and snow pears.

To start, soak you herbs in warm water to soften. You can also scrub the Chinese Yam in running water before soaking to rinse off the sulphur that is sometimes used to process it.  I just eyeball the amount of each herbs depending on the size of the pot, so it’s literally a handful of this and handful of that.

Soaking herbs ready for soup

Soaking herbs ready for soup

Prepare your meats by removing as much fat as possible. This means, going with lean pork shank and removing all the skin and fat from the chicken. I tried to get as small as a chicken as possible because my pot isn’t that big – in a previous post, I used chicken drumsticks – which work perfectly because of their size, portions and you get both bone and meat. In a separate pot, blanch the meats in boiling hot water for 5 minutes to remove scum, oil, dirt, blood and any extras that like to make their way out of the bones and meat and into your soup.  Once blanched, remove the meat from the soup and set aside to cool and to add to your soup later.

My overly ambitious portions of meat

My overly ambitious portions of meat – a mix of pork and chicken

Keep the skin on the apples and snow pears.  Firstly, this will help keep them intact and not disintegrate too much into the soup and secondly, it will help you scoop it out when you need to. Plus, the skin has its own unique flavour too – just be sure to rinse really well!

Start boiling your double-boiler (inner pot) outside on the stove with half the volume of water that the container will hold. It’s easier to add more water later if you need to top up. When the water more or less boils, throw all the ingredients into the pot. In my case, I can say OOPS! I was still missing one snow pear and 1 apple and ended up removing the ends of the drumsticks to make it all squeeze in. See, it’s all sticking out!

Adding all the ingredients into the double-boiler

Adding all the ingredients into the double-boiler

Double-boil for 30 minutes first

Double-boil for 30 minutes first

Cover (if you can) and set to let it boil on medium heat for about 30 minutes. Do note that snow pears actually RELEASE more water as it boils, so the risk that it spills over is almost certain!

My double-boiled soup now overspilling!

My double-boiled soup now overspilling!

After 30 minutes of medium boil, turn off the heat and let the pot cool. Once it cools sufficiently for you to put into its outer double-boiler, add the inner pot into the larger outer pot. You can add water later – but when you add water to the outer pot – add hot water! This will reduce the temperature flux of your inner pot.  Fill it with enough water so that you can cover the inner double-boiler and this outer pot water won’t spill into the double-boiler. Cover and set on a low boil (you can still see small bubbles) for about 3 hours.

The double-boiler inside an outer pot

The double-boiler inside an outer pot

You’ll know your soup is progressing well when you see the pears and apples and colour of the soup turn into a rich golden liquid. Most double-boiled soups some in this golden colour and you’ll know that the flavours are intense and rich.

Rich soup colour of the double-boiled soup when it's almost ready

Rich soup colour of the double-boiled soup when it’s almost ready

Once your soup is ready, scoop out whatever you’d like and serve HOT! NO SALT NEEDED! That’s how sweet it is! Some people will like to eat the meats, dipped on soy sauce – by all means, do it! The meat is delicious as well. In my situation, I had leftover fruit, so I simply drank 2 bowls the size of rice bowls, threw in the rest of the fruit and added some more water and continued to double-boil it for another hour until dinner. Enjoy! I certainly did!

Double-boiled Apple and Pear Chinese Soup

Double-boiled Apple and Pear Chinese Soup

 

Double-boiled Apple and Pear Chinese Herbal Soup
Recipe Type: Soup
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: LadyTong
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6 soup bowls
Ingredients
  • 1 whole fresh [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/chicken-whole/”]chicken[/url], cut small (skin removed)
  • 1/2 pound of fresh [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/pork-shank/”]pork shank[/url], cut small
  • 1 tablespoon of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/scallops-dried-conpoy/”]dried conpoy[/url]
  • 1 tablespoon of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/wolfberries-dried/”]dried wolfberries[/url]
  • 1 tablespoon of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/longan-dried/”]dried longans[/url]
  • 1 tablespoon of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/red-dates/”]dried red dates[/url]
  • 3 pieces of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/chinese-yam-dried/”]dried Chinese Yam[/url]
  • 2 [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/fuji-apples-2/”]fuji apples[/url], largely cubed (with skin)
  • 2 fresh [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/snow-pears/”]snow pears[/url], largely cubed (with skin)
  • 3 L of water (or whatever your volume of double-boiler is)
Instructions
  1. Soak all the Chinese herbs in warm water. You can rinse the dried Chinese yams under running water and rub them to remove any sulphur from the drying process.
  2. Prepare the meat by cutting in to large bite-size, removing all skin and fat.
  3. In a separate pot of boiling water, blanch all the meat in the boiling water for 5 minutes. Set aside when finished.
  4. Cut, core, remove seeds and cut the apples and pears into large bite-sizes, keeping on the skin.
  5. Boil you soup water at half capacity in the double-boiler.
  6. When the water boils, add all the ingredients into it and top up with hot water (or boiling water from a kettle).
  7. Boil on medium heat for 30 minutes.
  8. Turn off heat and set to cool enough that you can move the pot into the outer double-boiler pot.
  9. Put inner pot into outer pot and fill with enough water to cover up to at least 3/4 of the inner pot.
  10. Boil on low heat (minimal bubbles) for 3 hours.
  11. Serve and enjoy – soup stuff included!

 

 

Chinese Yam with Apples and Corn in Chicken Broth

Chinese Yam with Apples and Corn in Chicken Broth

Soup Name: Chinese Yam with Apples and Corn in Chicken Broth (with Ginger)

Traditional Chinese Name:  蘋果玉米淮山雞湯 (píng guǒ yù mǐ huái shān jī tāng)

Introduction:
A simple, clean chicken broth with just a hint of sweetness and a tang of spice (from the ginger). Depending on who your consumer is, add less or more ginger. For confinement, don’t be scared to throw it all in! This soup is easy to make, it’s got basic neutral ingredients and is great for the whole family!

 

What Ingredients are required?

1 fresh whole chicken, quartered
4-5 whole apples, cored and quartered
2 fresh corn, quartered
2 fresh pieces of Chinese Yam about 1 foot in length, peeling is optional, quartered
150 g of sliced fresh ginger (for confinement purposes)
2 L of water
salt to taste

How do I prepare it?

  1. Clean, prepare and blanch chicken in a pot of boiling water for 5 minutes
  2. Set aside to cool
  3. Wash, prepare apples, corn and Chinese Yam
  4. Slice ginger thinly
  5. Boil your soup water, when it boils, add all the ingredients together
  6. Boil on high for about 30 minutes and reduce to a simmer for 1 hour
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • With ginger, it’s a slightly warm soup, but without it, it’s neutral
  • Pregnancy, confinement and child friendly
  • Sweet and fresh to the taste
  • Excellent source of Vitamins and hearty to eat

Any precautions?

  • For children, go easy on the ginger because that can really spice up the soup!
  • Be sure to clean, peel Chinese Yam with gloves as the outer skin of the Chinese Yam can make your fingers itchy (if you opt to peel the skin)

Similar soups:

Snow Pears and Apples in Chicken Broth

Soup Name: Snow Pears and Apples in Chicken Broth

Traditional Chinese Name:蘋果雪梨雞湯 (píng guǒ xuě lí jī tāng)

Introduction:

This naturally sweet soup is great in lowering “heatiness” in the body.  It’s not overly cooling, but does help soothe sore throats, sun stroke (& dehydration), and cool down that fiery feeling in your body when you eat too many fried and spicy foods.  It’s great for kids, is super easy to make and the ingredients are readily available.

What ingredients are required?

1 whole fresh chicken, quartered
3-4 fuji apples
3-4 snow pears
2-3 large dried dates
1 tablespoon of  apricot kernals
3 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Prepare chicken (see instructions on the chicken page) and quarter
  2. Begin boiling your soup water
  3. Rinse and soak in warm water the dried dates and apricot kernals for 10 minutes
  4. Blanch the chicken in a separate pot of boiling water
  5. Wash the snow pears and apples, halve and core
  6. Add all the ingredients to boiling water
  7. Boil on high for thirty minutes and reduce to a medium boil for an hour
  8. Serve and enjoy

Any benefits?

  • Snow pears are cooling and help in nourishing the lungs and cooling the heart
  • This soup is ideal for the summer months
  • It helps relieve heatiness and conditions such as sore and dry throats or heated bodies from consumption of fried and spicy foods

Any precautions?

  • Snow pears are mildly “cooling” so people who sensitive to cooling soups should caution
  • The chicken itself is quite fatty, so use an oil scooper to remove the fat and oil

Apple and Corn in Chicken Soup

Soup Name:  Apple and Corn in Chicken Soup

Traditional Chinese Name:蘋果玉米雞湯 (píng guǒ yù mǐ jī tāng)
 
Introduction:
This is a family favourite.  With apples and corn, the soup is sweet to taste and refreshing.  It’s a neutral soup that’s ideal for pregnancy, confinement (with adding dragon’s eyes, Chinese Yams and a slice of ginger) and for children.  It can serve as a meal and packed full of vitamins. 

What Ingredients are required?

1 fresh whole chicken
4-5 whole apples 
2 fresh corn
1 fresh whole lily bulb
1 dried tangerine peel
2-3 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Prepare chicken for soup
  2. Begin boiling your soup water
  3. Boil a separate pot to blanch chicken
  4. Peel and wash lily bulbs
  5. Wash and cut corn and apples
  6. Wash and scrape tangerine peel
  7. When water boils, add all the ingredients together
  8. Boil for at least 2 hour2
  9. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Pregnancy, confinement and child friendly
  • Helps reduce and eliminate coughs and phlegm
  • Sweet and fresh to the taste
  • Excellent source of Vitamins and hearty to eat

Chicken Feet, Snow Fungus and Apple Soup

Soup Name:  Chicken Feet, Snow Fungus and Apple Soup
 
Traditional Chinese Name: 雞爪雪耳 果湯 (tāng)

Introduction:
Chicken feet are very popular for use as the base meat in Chinese soups.  Snow fungus adds a delicious texture and the apples add a sweet tang to the soup.  This is a great winter soup.

What Ingredients are required?

6 pieces of chicken feet
2 large pieces of snow fungus
4 large fuji apples
1 tablespoon of apricot kernels
1 small piece (strawberry-sized) ginge
r (whole and skinned)
2 pieces of dried scallop

How do I prepare it?

  1. Start boiling your water soup
  2. In a separate pot, blanch the chicken feet and strain it removing any dirt and debris from the blanching
  3. Trim the nails and hardened skin from the chicken feet and add them to the boiling water of your soup
  4. Soak the snow fungus (approximately 2 large tennis ball-sized pieces) in cold water for 20 minutes) and cut into smaller pieces
  5. Wash, core, and quarter the apples
  6. Add the apples, snow fungus, dried scallops, and apricot kernels into the soup 
  7. Peel the ginger and throw into the soup whole
  8. Boil for at least 60-90 minutes on high heat.  The longer you boil it, the tastier the soup!

 Any benefits?

  • This soup derives most of its benefits from the snow fungus.

Any precautions?

  • None that I can think of.  Enjoy!