Tuesday, February 22, 2011

無花果馬蹄瘦肉湯/Pork with Fig and Water Chestnut Soup

It’s flu season again.  So many people getting sick because of the rain and sudden weather changes that always come at the end of February.  This soup is great for the flu season.  When I was a kid, my mom always made this soup for us in winter or early spring when the weather changes. According to traditional Chinese herbal medicine, this soup strengthens ones immunity, prevents cold and flu, clears away toxins from one's body and relieves a sore throat.  On top of that, this soup is delicious and refreshing.  The veggie ingredients, particularly ginger, have a natural sweet taste, combining nicely with the fragrance and flavors of the pork.


·      6 oz pork backbones
·      4 oz lean Pork leg
·      4 oz carrots
·      3 oz water chestnuts
·      4 honey dates
·      2 figs
·      1 oz sliced ginger
·      2.5 liter water (about half of a large soup pot)
·      1½ tsp salt


Peel the skin off the water chestnuts.  In a large soup pot, add pork backbones, pork meat, carrots, water chestnuts, honey dates, fig, ginger and water. Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to the lowest, use a soup strainer to strain all the dark bubbles on top of the water.  Reduce the heat to the lowest and cook for 2 - 3 hours, add salt.  Now the soup is done!

This soup can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.  Just make sure to boil it for a few minutes before eating.

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