Sunday, May 1, 2011

My Cooking Journal 10 - Simple Chinese Winter Melon Soup (冬瓜汤)

Our weather (Singapore) has been hot and humid lately. I feel so sluggish and tire and all my family members are down with sore throat, cough and running nose. I desperately need something to cool and refresh my mind and body.

Chinese winter melon soup (冬瓜汤) just came across my mind. This is one of my mum's signature dishes that she often made for us since young. I love the taste of this soup as it is light and clear with a taste of sweetness. Very delicate and simple soup to make.

Benefits and Buying  

Winter melon is high in Vitamin B and dietary fiber. It helps to cool, refresh and detoxify the body. It also helps in treating people with mild urinary tract problems. You can simply purchase them in any local super market or wet market. It is usually sell in slice due to their bulky size. And it is best to choose the slice that is near  top or bottom end as it gives more sweetness to the soup.  
In chinese, this soup is known as "Dong Gua Tang" (冬瓜汤).  "Dong Gua" means winter melon and "Tang" means soup. This soup that I am going to recommend is a typical hokkien style quick soup. It is very easy to prepare and cook (takes approx. 45 minutes).

My Ingredient:

  1. 1 pack/slice winter melon - to serve two adult and two toddlers
  2. pork ribs - 2 to 3 pieces - washed
  3. 18 nos. dry scallop - small size
  4. Water -  enough to cover half the pot
  5. 2 eggs - beat the egg in a small bowl
  6. 100g to 200g minced pork
  7. 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  8. 1 teaspoon fish sauce 
  9. 1/2 teaspoon corn flour
  10. pinch of pepper, salt and sugar - to taste 

  1. Marinate the minced pork with fish sauce, sesame oil, corn flour, sugar and pepper (quantity refer to the above). Then roll and shape the minced pork into small meat ball individually. Set aside.
  2. Wash the winter melon into cubes. Remove the skin and inner seeds and cut the winter melon into cubes.
  3. Prepare a pot of boiling water. This is used for cooking the winter melon soup. Put the dry scallop in the soup pot and simmer for 20 minutes in medium fire.
  4. Prepare another small pot of boiling water (purpose for blanching the pork ribs). Blanch the pork ribs in this pot of boiling water. Remove pork ribs and transfer to the soup pot.
  5. Simmer the soup pot (with dry scallop and pork ribs in the pot)  for another 15 minutes.
  6. Then add in the winter melon. Boil the soup until winter melon turns transparent.
  7. Add in the meat ball. Once the meat ball float, pour in the beaten egg into the pot and use a chopsticks to stir the soup in a circular motion until you see long thin threads are form and float in the soup.  
  8. Add salt to taste and serve.

Method 1.

Method 5 & 6.

Method 7.

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