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My family loves this Chinese soup, especially on a cold day. Ethan would always add LOTS of ground white pepper to his bowl of soup. We used to visit a local Chinese restaurant called Daimo, and we would order this soup almost every time. Too bad the restaurant changed ownership and the soup didn’t taste good. The restaurant even closed down later on. My kids are not fans of green onion and cilantro in general, but they like the green stuff in the soup!… This is good because this soup without lots of green onion and cilantro doesn’t taste right…

West Lake Beef Soup 西湖牛肉羹

West Lake Beef Soup 西湖牛肉羹

West Lake Beef Soup 西湖牛肉羹

Ingredients:

1 1/4 lb beef– chop into coarse ground with some slightly big pieces

Meat seasoning:
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground white pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp tapioca/corn starch
3 tbsp water

5 cups water
3 tbsp rice cooking wine
Starch water (mix 2 tbsp tapioca/corn starch with 1 tbsp water, stir well before use)
Salt and ground white pepper to taste
3 egg whites
2 stalks green onion– chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro– chopped

Method:

  1. Season beef with meat seasoning, mix well. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Bring 5 cups of water to a boil on high heat. Add in beef, stir to loose up the meat. When the soup boils again add cooking wine, followed by starch water while stirring the soup.
  3. When the soup starts boiling again, add salt and ground white pepper to taste. Pour in egg whites while stirring the soup. Turn off heat and add in green onions and cilantro. Serve immediately.

Regina’s Note:

  • Egg White: Do not whisk egg white as it will create egg white bubbles in the soup.
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This is just a variation of my corn and rib soup. The whole family has been having lots of grilled and fried foods lately. I want to make some bitter melon soup for the family to tone down the heaty side, but knowing everyone of them can’t take the bitterness, I sneaked in with some sweet corns that are in season now. And it worked. There is a slightest bitterness in the soup but none of them tasted it. In fact my oldest son Alexander, who is expected to be the first one on the rejecting list, asked for second serving of the soup.

Corn, Bitter Melon & Rib Soup 玉米苦瓜排骨汤

Corn, Bitter Melon & Rib Soup 玉米苦瓜排骨汤

Corn, Bitter Melon & Rib Soup 玉米苦瓜排骨汤

Ingredients:
1.5 lbs pork spare rib — cut into chunks
2 ears of corns — cut into 8 pieces
1 small bitter melon– remove the core, cut into 2 inch length chunks
1 can reduced sodium chicken broth
10 cups water
salt to taste

Method:

  1. Add 1 tsp of salt to cut bitter melon. Add a little water and use you hand to gently squeeze the melon, so it will draw out some bitter liquid. Let it sit for 10 minutes. Wash and rinse a couple of times. Drain.
  2. Blanch ribs in boiling water for a minutes to remove impurities. Rinse and drain.
  3. In a deep pot boil water and chicken broth over high heat. Add in blanched ribs. Cover and boil on high heat for 10 minutes. Turn down to medium heat and boil for 1 hour.
  4. Add in corn and bitter melon. Cover and continue cooking on medium heat for another 1- 1.5 hours. Add more water if the liquid is low. Add salt to taste. If mild bitterness is preferred, remove bitter melon from the soup ahead of time once they are tender.

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Winter Melon, White Fungus & Sparerib Soup

Winter Melon, White Fungus & Sparerib Soup

Winter Melon, White Fungus & Sparerib Soup Recipe

Ingredients:
1 lb spareribs– cut into big pieces
1 lb winter melon– remove skin and seeds, cut into big chunks
2 big cluster of dried white fungus– soak in water until soft, remove any hard parts then cut into big chunks
3 dried scallops
3 dried red dates
2 slices ginger
2-3 quarts water
Salt to taste

Method:

  1. Add dried scallops, red dates, ginger and water to a big pot and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, fill a medium pot with enough water then bring to a boil. Add spareribs to blanch. Remove from heat. Rinse blanched spareribs under water remove any bloody impurities, drain.
  2. Let the big pot boil on high heat for 5-10 minutes for the flavor to come out. Add blanched spareribs, cover and boil on high heat for 5 minutes. Then turn heat down to medium and boil for 1 hour.
  3. Add fungus, cover and boil for another 45 minutes to 1 hour until fungus just turn soft, adding more hot water if necessary. Put in winter melon and continue boiling for another 5 minutes. Add salt to taste. When served, dip the melon, fungus and meat with fresh hot pepper soy sauce if desired for that spicy kick on the taste.

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Every now and then I will make this soup when I see lotus root selling at the Chinese grocery store. Alexander likes the black beans in the soup. Ethan will take some lotus root slices besides the beans. We don’t have soup everyday in our house so whenever I make it I will make extra to last for another meal. Since we eat the soup ingredients so I use pork spareribs instead of lean pork which is too chewy.

Black Bean, Spare Rib & Lotus Root Soup

Black Bean, Spareribs & Lotus Root Soup

Ingredients:
1 1/2 lb spareribs– cut into chunks
1 cup dry black bean– soaked at least 30 minutes, rinse
1 lb lotus root– peeled, trim off both ends and slice into 1/2 inch thickness
3 gallons water
salt to taste

Method:

  1. Boil 3 gallons of water in a big pot. In the meanwhile, fill a medium pot with enough water then bring to a boil. Add spareribs to blanch. Remove from heat. Rinse blanched spareribs under water to get rid of any bloody impurities, drain.
  2. Rinse soaked black beans a couple of time to get rid of the dark water, drain.
  3. When water in big pot is boiling, add spareribs, soaked black beans and lotus roots. Be sure there is lots of water covers the ingredients (the ingredients will have room to flow freely in the water when you stir it). Cover and cook on high heat for 30 minutes. Turn heat down to medium and cook for another 2.5 hours, until the black beans are soft to bite. By this time the soup should be cloudy looking. Add salt to taste before serving.

Note:

  • For making soup, choose lotus root that are mature– they usually feel heavy and have pinkish/brownish flesh.

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