Soup in Cantonese Meals; "Medical" Soups
Posted 02 December 2002 - 11:36 AM
In addition, what are your thoughts on the use of products in soups or other brewed concoctions that have alleged to have certain potential medical benefits (e.g., the Chinese herb "worm in the wintertime and grass in the summertime"; gingseng; the mushroom-like item "ling tze", informally translated; birds' nest)? Do you consume such products with any regularity?
Posted 04 December 2002 - 03:27 PM
I'm not Ed, but one of my all time favorite Usenet posts is from Timothy Ng, a cooking teacher, on the very subject of soups. My partner is Hokkien by way of Singapore, and in the last few years I've become fascinated with the tonic soups drunk in southern provinces. I think the best-written descriptions I've found have been in Grace Young's The Wisdom of the Chinese Kitchen. She has 3 different sections on soups/tonics. Armed with her info and a few conversations with our favorite Cantonese granny, we had a very successful visit to a medicine shop in SF's Chinatown and have been happily making snack and tonic soups since.
For what it's worth, many of the herbs and roots used in the various concoctions (like ching bo leung) end up to contain quantifiable amounts of some pharmacologically active ingredient that matches up with some of the health claims made for the particular concoction. Also, I think it's interesting that there is some overlap between western and eastern medicinal herbs like angelica vs. don quai.
Posted 04 December 2002 - 04:52 PM