Walnuts and Cashews in Pork Broth

Soup Name: Walnuts and Cashews in Pork Broth

Traditional Chinese Name: 合桃素湯 (hé táo sù tāng)


This interesting soup is mainly composed of round stuff (little nibbles of things) like nuts and beans.  This soups excellent for “brain” and “memory” development (so says my herbalist) and great for kids.  This soup does need something to punch up the taste because without additional veggies, it really does taste a bit bland and nutty, so I threw in a pumpkin (which still didn’t make it sweet enough, so maybe throw in some carrots and corn too).  Next time.

What ingredients are required?

1 pound fresh pork shank
20g of peeled cashews
20g of peeled walnuts
2-3 large dried dates
1 fresh lily bulb (or dried)
10 pitted red dates
20 dried lotus seeds
1 whole Japanese pumpkin, largely sliced with skin
40 g red kidney beans
2 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Soak the cashews, walnuts, dates, lily bulb and beans in warm water
  2. Begin to boil your soup water
  3. In a separate pot of boiling water, blanch the pork shank for 5 minutes and drain
  4. Wash and chop pumpkin into slices (while keeping skin to prevent the pumpkin from disintegrating)
  5. When your soup water boils, throw all the ingredients together
  6. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes and reduce to a medium boil for another 1.5 hours
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Excellent soup for eyes and brain development (especially in children)
  • Ingredients are readily available
  • Soup is low in fat

Any precautions?

  • This soup has a strong nutty taste, so you can consider masking it with  more veggies (ie: corn, carrots, squash)
  • Caution for children under 2 (as walnuts & cashews may be a risk for nut allergy)


Ingredient Name: Cashews

Traditional Chinese Name: 腰果 (Yāoguǒ)

What is this?
  • The edible seed of the cashew fruit (of the cashew tree)
  • The cashew nut is mildly sweet and crunchy in texture
  • The cashew nut is beige/white in color and usually looks like the shape of a boat (see picture above)
  • It is commonly found in Chinese cuisines (as a whole nut), soups and desserts

How do I prepare it?

  • Rinse in warm water before usage
  • Avoid using cashews that are pre-salted or roasted in soups

Where can I buy this?

  • Cashews are available all year round in all supermarkets

What is the cost?

  • This is not an expensive ingredient and the price varies depending on preparation and packaging

Any benefits?

  • Cashews are an excellent source of antioxidants and minerals
  • They contain the “good” fatty acids that help lower bad cholesterol
  • Cashews are rich in Vitamin B’s

Any precautions?

  • Cashews are a high calorie food, so consume in moderation
  • The shell of the cashew nut is toxic (similar to that of the poison ivy) and is a skin irritant
  • Take caution when serving to children as it is a nut and may cause allergies in children

Additional Information

  • Store in a dry and cool place in a tightly sealed container
  • Cashews can store up to 6 months if properly stored