Basic Chinese Chicken Soup Stock (Soup Base)

Basic Chinese Chicken Soup Stock (Soup Base)

Basic Chinese Chicken Soup Stock (Soup Base)

Soup Name

Basic Chinese Chicken Soup Stock (Soup Base)

Traditional Chinese Name:  

清雞湯 (qīng jī tāng)

 

This is the base Chinese Chicken Soup stock that I make for any of my Chinese soups. It’s simple, straight-forward, and delicious on its own. It does take some preparation in that you need to blanch all the meats, soak the conpoys for at least 10 minutes, quarter the chicken, and then add everything together. And then patience, for a few hours to let it all simmer together. This is perfect for freezing for usage with soups later on, so I do suggest to make more! Perfect for the whole family and any condition.

The benefits:

  • Perfect for any soup base. You can simply add your favourite vegetables or even Chinese herbs.
  • This soup is perfect for cooler days as it’s slightly warming
  • Perfect for confinement, postpartum, and post period
  • Ideal for the whole family, including children
  • These ingredients are readily available in most Chinese supermarkets around the world, all you need is just a chicken!
  • Be sure to to consult your (Chinese) doctor first if you’re unsure of consumption or suitability
  • You can store this soup base in a plastic container (or jar with a wide mouth so it’s easier to use back later) for up to 6 months in the freezer

 

What’s involved?

Prep time: 30 mins

Cook time: 3 hours

Total time: 3 hours 30 mins

Serves: 8 bowls 

Ingredients

Cooking Instructions

  1. Optional step the night before is to salt the pork shanks and chicken overnight and wrap and store in the fridge to let it sit.  This will allow the flavors to marinate and soften the meat.
  2. Begin to boil a separate pot for blanching the meat
  3. Soak the dried conpoys in warm water for 10 minutes
  4. Prepare your chicken and cutting it into quarters (or any size you prefer)
  5. When your blanching water boils, add in the pork and chicken and boil on high heat for 5 minutes. Make sure the water is boiling and you should see residue, fat, grim, and even foam come to the surface.
  6. Begin to boil your soup water
  7. Once your soup water boils, remove the meat from the blanching pot and shake off any excess and slowly lower into your soup water
  8. Add in dried conpoys
  9. Boil on medium heat for 30 minutes
  10. Reduce heat to the lowest and cover and let it simmer like that for another 2-3 hours (or use a thermal pot). The soup should now be a rich, golden color after boiling for so long. Be sure to scoop out any oil, fat bits, or skin from the top with an oil scooper

For video on “7 Basic Chinese Soup Pantry Ingredients”, visit us on YouTube.

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!

 

 

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup

I had to try my new double-boiling Chinese soup pot, so specifically sourced some nice Korean Ginseng ($100 HKD for 2 pieces) so I could make double-boiled ginseng soup with chicken (and pork). I love the genuine taste of Ginseng, it’s smooth and golden. And I love it in soups even more!  Using the simplest of herbs, the soup takes a solid 3 hours in the double-boiler – but comes out rich, delicious and bursting full of flavours. Truly one of my favourite double-boiled goodies.

The benefits of ginseng and chicken soup are also numerous. Ginseng is usually described as “nourishing life” and the effects of the double-boiler, which maintains the soup at a lower heat without disturbing the ingredients physically, enable the flavours and efficacy of the ginger to permeate throughout the soup.  The soup enhance immune functions and make body functions strong like the heart, lungs and spleen.

Soup Name: Double-boiled Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup

Traditional Chinese Name:  人參雞湯 (rén sēn jī tāng)

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

The ingredients include: Fresh Korean ginseng, pork, chicken, dried red dates, dried Chinese Yam, and dried longans.  I used chicken drumsticks instead of a whole chicken (which is usually recommended). The constraints you’re working with include the size of your double-boiler. In most cases, double-boilers need to fit inside another pot, so unless you’re got a restaurant-sized soup pot, you are restricted to the size of your double-boiling pot to fit the ingredients.

Chicken drumsticks for soup

Chicken drumsticks for soup

To keep the soup as “skinny” as possible, I removed the skin and as much fat as I could. Then I chopped the drumsticks into 3’s so that I can compact the size of the ingredients to fit into the double-boiler. The same applied for the pork shank. I didn’t blanch the meat as both didn’t have that much fat and I rinsed them under cool water before throwing it into the soup to clean them.

Keep the herbs simple. A mixture of these will suffice. Actually, my herbalist even suggested to just use dried Chinese Yam and that’s it, but I liked a little bit of sweetness and wanted to balance the coolness of the ginseng with the heaty of the dried longans just a little.  If you’re scared that it’s too cooling, throw in 1-2 slices of ginger to balance it out.

Herbs for Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup

Herbs for Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup

Start by boiling your soup water. To be honest, I am eye-balling everything, but I started with a half pot of water and decided that I could always add more water after fitting all the ingredients in. Once the water boils, throw in all the ingredients together and boil on high for about 30 minutes. This is still OUTSIDE of the double-boiler.

Double-boiler

Double-boiler

The point of boiling it outside is to make sure everything is boiling inside and sufficiently cooking and mixing and bringing out nice flavours. I then turn off the stove and let it cool enough to bring the double-boiler into the pot to really begin the double-boiling process.  Once inside the double-boiling pot, you can top it off with boiling water to ensure it’s full (more soup) and fill the double-boiling outside pot with warm or slightly hot water.  Boil the outside pot until it really boils and then reduce to a very, very, very small boil and keep it tightly covered.

The double-boiler inside the outside pot

The double-boiler inside the outside pot

Double-boil it for about 3 hours and when it’s done, the soup will be a rich, golden colour and smell delicious. The house permeates with this ginseng fragrance and it’s beautiful.

Beautiful double-boiled soup ready for drinking!

Beautiful double-boiled soup ready for drinking!

I recommend directly serving from the double-boiler to the bowl.  No salt is needed. Enjoy!!!

Variations to the soup can include using the black, silkie chicken instead. They are definitely smaller, so hopefully will fit – but in general, this soup is made with both chicken and pork. You can also change up some of the herbs to include maybe the large dried dates, Astragalus Root,  wolfberries, or Codonopsis Pilosula Root.

 

 

Double-boiled Korean Ginseng and Chicken Soup
Recipe Type: Soup
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: LadyTong
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6 bowls
Ingredients
  • 3 fresh [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/chicken-whole/”]chicken drumsticks[/url], skinned and chopped into 3 parts
  • 2 fresh pieces of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/korean-ginseng/”]Korean ginseng[/url]
  • 1/2 pound of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/pork-shank/”]fresh pork shank[/url], cubed
  • 10 [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/red-dates/”]dried red dates[/url]
  • 10 [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/longan-dried/”]dried longans[/url]
  • 4-5 pieces of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/chinese-yam-dried/”]dried Chinese Yam[/url]
  • 1-2 slices of [url href=”http://www.thechinesesouplady.com/ginger-fresh/”]fresh ginger[/url] (optional)
  • 2 L of water for soup
Instructions
  1. Wash, skin and chop the fresh chicken drumsticks
  2. Wash and cube the fresh pork shank
  3. Begin to boil your double-boiling inner pot half full of cold water
  4. When the water boils, add all the ingredients together
  5. Boil on high for 30 minutes
  6. Let the inner pot cool and transfer to the double-boiling outer pot
  7. Top up the inner doubler-boiler with hot or boiling water
  8. Fill the outer pot with warm or hot water
  9. Set on high heat until the outer water is boiling
  10. Reduce heat to a minimum boil while keeping both pots covered
  11. Boil for another 3 hours
  12. Serve and enjoy!

 

 

Black Silkie Chicken with Vegetables and Chestnuts

Soup Name: Black Silkie Chicken with Vegetables and Chestnuts

Traditional Chinese Name:  黑雞蘿蔔玉米栗子湯 (hēi jī luó bo yù mǐ lì zǐ tāng)

Introduction:
Black silkie chickens aren’t the most appealing animals to look at, but it can really pack a delicious punch to soups. I usually boil the chicken with the skin on and will eat the chicken as part of the soup. The meat is silky, tender and delicious. You can treat this like normal chicken, adding the same ingredients as other chicken soups. The black silkie chicken isn’t always available and costs slightly more (about 30-50% more) than your average chicken (of the same size). Black silkie chickens tend to be smaller in size as well. The soup I made here is my simple vegetable soup (with any type of meat). Corn and carrots are naturally sweet already and because I love the soft, melted texture of the boiled onion, I throw that in as well (and the kids don’t really taste it).

Amount serves: 4 servings (around 250 mL each)

What Ingredients are required?

1 whole fresh black silkie chicken, quartered (with skin and innards)
20 fresh chestnuts, peeled
2 whole corn, halved
2 whole carrots, sliced
2 fresh white onions, halved
10 dried scallops (conpoys)

3 L of water

How do I prepare it?

  1. Soak your conpoy in warm water for about 10 minutes.
  2. Boil a medium pot of water (for the chestnuts). When the water boils, add in the chestnuts to boil for 5 minutes.
  3. If you can, immediately peel the chestnuts (as its easiest to peel when it’s still hot). Set aside.
  4. Empty the water and boil a new pot to blanch the chicken (including the innards).
  5. Boil your soup water and prepare the vegetables.
  6. Once your soup water boils, add all the ingredients together.
  7. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes and reduce to a medium simmer for another hour.
  8. Salt as needed, serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • This soup is lean in fat and high in protein. The meat of the silkie chicken is very tasty and the chicken itself is usually skinnier and has less fat than of its white counterpart
  • The silkie chicken soup base is great to freeze and use later (by adding fresh vegetables or fruits)
  • This soup is ideal for children (and the whole family)
  • You can add literally any vegetables with the black silkie chicken

Any precautions?

  • Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after handling raw chicken meat
Abalone in Chicken Soup

Abalone in Chicken Soup

Soup Name: Abalone in Chicken Soup

Traditional Chinese Name: 鮑魚清雞湯 (bào yú qīng jī tāng)

Introduction:
This soup is a powered up version of the Chicken Herbal Soup. Packed with the natural sea-sweetness of the abalones and herbs, it’s a great soup for the cold winter months or confinement. You can eat the abalone as whole pieces (usually the smaller ones are cheaper, but it’s still an expensive soup), or sliced thinly and dipped in soy sauce.  Regardless, don’t waste the abalone!  In addition, I know it says Chicken soup, but the Chinese commonly also add a small pork shank or pork bone to their otherwise known as Chicken and even Fish soups.  You can’t get away from the staple pork.

What Ingredients are required?

1 fresh whole chicken, prepared and quartered
1 pound of fresh pork shank (or any other pork parts for soups is suitable)
6-7 fresh small abalones (or dried)
5-6 dried scallops (conpoys)
1 handful of wolfberries
20 g of dried peanuts (for soups)
20 g of euryale or fox nuts
5 sticks of dried Chinese yam
2 litres of water


How do I prepare it?

  1. Prepare chicken (in quarters) by rinsing and blanching in a pot of boiling water (let it boil for about 2-3 minutes)
  2. Remove chicken and set aside
  3. Boil your pork in the same pot of boiling water as the chicken (for 2-3 minutes)
  4. Drain water and set aside
  5. Wash and clean abalone (with a toothbrush to be sure to brush off all the black residue)
  6. Wash and soak for 10 minutes all the dried herbs
  7. Boil your soup water
  8. When your soup water is boiling, add all the ingredients together
  9. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes and reduce to low boil for another 2 hours.
  10. Serve and enjoy!

Any benefits?

  • Excellent warming soup for cold days
  • Good to increase blood circulation and blood flow
  • It is considered to be of the “healing” categories of soup
  • If used for confinement, you can make the soup more concentrated (less water or more ingredients)

Any precautions?

  • As the whole chicken can be oily, be sure to remove all oil before serving
  • Minimize herbs when used for children (above sampling suggested)
  • Peanuts are also introduced in this soup, so remove or avoid giving to children as suggested with potential peanut allergies

Similar soups: