Showing posts with label Lotus Seeds (莲子). Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lotus Seeds (莲子). Show all posts

Wednesday 2 February 2011

Lotus Seeds, Longan And Persimmon Sweet Soup

Today is Chinese New Year Eve and I am sure most of the young kids are very excited about the "Ang Bao(s)" that they are going to collect over the long weekend holiday. And for the adults, especially all the "Mums'" no doubts most of you will be busying in the kitchen preparing all the yummy food for reunion dinner.

Ladies from the younger generation perhaps you can also contribute some easy Chinese New Year "Auspicious" sweet soup as after meal dessert to pamper the elderly for preparing such as great reunion feast and as well share the sweet and harmony atmosphere through the sweetness of the dessert.     

This is the most common Chinese New Year sweet soup that is being favourite by old and young generation. You can manipulate with the ingredients according to your preference but these are the usual ingredients used.

Preparation Time: 15 Minutes                                   Cooking Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients: (serves 4)
60g Dried Lotus Seeds(莲子), soak till soften
60g Fresh Gingko Nut(白果)
80g Dried Longan(桂圆肉)
1 1/2 Pieces of Brown Sugar(冰片糖)
2 Small Pieces of Dried Persimmon(柿饼), sliced
4 Sterculia Seeds (澎大海)
2 Litres of Water
1 Bundle of Pandan Leaves

1. Soak the Sterculia Seeds into hot water until fully burst out before removing the outer shell and seed. Rinse and drained well then set aside.
2. Soak Dried Lotus seeds in hot water for about 5 minutes till soften, rinse and remove any green sprouts from each seed and set aside.
3. Rinse the pre-packed fresh Gingko Nuts and season it with 1 teaspoon castor sugar.
4. Bring 2 Litres of water to boil, add in lotus seeds and dried longan, cook on medium hat for about 10 minutes, add in marinated gingko nuts and pandan leaves and cook for another 10 minutes before adding brown sugar to taste.
5. When done, add in sliced persimmon and prepared peng-da-hai then give them a quick stir before turning off the heat.
6. Dish up on bowl and serve either hot or cold.

Sterculia Seeds (Pend-da-hai "澎大海") is brown and wrinkled in appearance but sweet and cold in nature. These seeds were traditionally used to soothe a sore throat and cough, but in addition it also helps clear the intestine and assist proper bowel function. From the photo above it shows the "bursting" effect of the Sterculia seeds after being soaked in hot water for about 5 minutes.

With this Chinese New Year sweet soup, I wish everyone had a Sweet And Harmony moment with your loved one just like this sweet soup and their auspicious meaning of the ingredients. Stay healthy always and I hope you will find some inspiration through those Chinese New Year dishes or dessert that I have shared this year. Thanks.

Thursday 20 January 2011

Lotus Seeds Soup - 莲子羹

During the Eve of Chinese New Year, usually most of the household would prepare a sweet dessert to be served during the 1st Day of Chinese Luna New Year as an auspicious treat for the family or relatives. The common sweet dessert(Tong Shui) are Cheng Teng(清汤), Red Bean Cream(红豆沙), Lily Bulb and Lotus Seeds(百合莲子), Glutinous Rice Balls Soup(汤圆) and etc.

For a Teochew household like us, we usually have our favourite "Yam Paste(Orr Nee)", "Cheng Teng(清汤)" or "Lotus Soup(莲子羹)" which is shown in this post. Last year, I made Glutinous Red Date With Osmanthus Syrup for Chinese New Year dessert but this year I would like to share this Lotus Soup post with you.

This photo shows some of the ingredients and steps in preparing our all-time favourite dessert during Chinese New Year.

Ingredients: (serves 6 - 8)
300g Dried Lotus Seeds
150g Brown Sugar(in pieces form)
30g Brown Sugar
2 Tablespoons Caster Sugar
1 Bundle of Pandan Leaves
2.5 Litres of Water
1 1/2 Tablespoons Potato Starch(生粉) + 1 Tablespoon Water

1. Bring a small pot of water to boil, add dried lotus seeds and cook for 5 - 8 minutes or till soften.
2. Drain, rinse and remove the green sprout from each seeds and set aside.
3. Use a big soup pot, bring 2.5 litre of water to boil, when water comes to boil add in pandan leaves and cooked for about 5 minutes before adding it the pieces of brown sugar.
4. While waiting for the water to boil, season the cooked lotus seeds with 2 tablespoons of caster sugar and set aside.
5. When the pieces of brown sugar melt, removed the pandan leaves, add in seasoned lotus seeds and simmer on medium low heat another 15 - 20 minutes till the lotus seeds achieves your desire texture when bite.
6. Next slowly add in the remaining 30g of brown sugar to sweeten the dessert to your liking.
7. Stir in potato starch mixture over low heat to thicken the soup accordingly.
8. Remove from heat and serve warm.

Lotus Seeds(莲子)are actually nuts from the lotus plant that are commonly found in Asia. The typical lotus seed is small, round and slightly white in appearance that is usually sold in dried and pre-packaged. The most common use of the seed is in the form of a paste for making moon cakes and bun or sometime they are found as one of the ingredients in Asian dessert or soup.

It is believed that when using lotus seeds to cook soups, congee or dessert, it actually act as a cooling tonic that "clears heat" according to the Chinese Physician. being sweet and neutral, they have been known to tonify the spleen, reinforce the kidneys and nourish the blood too. But within the seed lies a "green sprout" that is quite bitter and it is usually removed when lotus seeds are use in sweet dessert.

No matter which Chinese New Year dessert you preferred or made at home I am sure everyone would love to have something Auspicious for their family. So if you have some special dessert which you prepared for Chinese New Year do share with us, if you don't have a blog you can Email me your recipe and I would be most delighted to do a [Guest Post] on your behalf

Thursday 6 July 2006

8 Treasure Chicken Soup - 八宝鸡汤

I am sure you heard of "8 Treasure Porridge-八宝粥", "8 Treasure Rice-八宝饭" or even "8 Treasure Chicken/Duck-八宝鸡". So for my 8 Treasure Chicken Soup-八宝鸡汤 is to add another collection to you treasure box......This soup is good to calms spirit and smooth the intestines function and clear constipation. It also promote and ease urine flow. It's a very good soup for the whole family especially for those who are suffering for minor stress. To know more information of each herbs, you can click on the Basic Chinese Herbs link.

2-3 Chicken Drumsticks
20g Dried Lily Bulbs, 百合
20g Fox Nut,茨实
20g Lotus Seeds, 莲子/湘莲
20g Chinese Barley,中国薏米
10-12 Fresh Gingko Nuts,白果
3-4 Red Dates,红枣
1/2 Tablespoon Guo Qizi,枸杞子
150g Fresh Huai Shan,鲜淮山

1. Wash, trim and blanch the chicken in boiling water, drain and set aside.
2. Wash and peel the fresh huai shan then cut into 3 thick sections.
3. Rinse and drain the rest of the dried herbs and set side.
4. Bring 1.5 litres of water to boil, add in all the herbs and chicken then bring to boil again.
5. Transfer to a slow cooker and simmer on low heat for about 2 hours.
6. Season with salt and serve.

If you do not have fresh huai shan, then replace it with 4 - 5 slices of dried huai shan.

In this recipe, I used two types of dried lotus seeds, one with skin and one without.Posted by Picasa

Friday 16 June 2006

Si Shen Dang Gui Chicken Soup - 四神当归鸡汤

I think alot of people had heard or taken Si Shen Tang before. There are actually a few version of the ingredients. You can bought those pre-packed type from any supermarket or Chinese medical hall. The ingredients inside may vary and you can add in extra ingredients to suit your needs and taste.

For this Si Shen Tang of mine, I add in Fresh Huai Shan, Gou Qizi and Dang Gui(click link for more details) to make it more effective for the blood circulation. And the Lotus seed that I used is those type with skin. Lotus seeds are classified as astringents, being sweet and neutral, and benefiting the spleen, kidney, and heart. The sweet taste and nourishing qualities of the seed are responsible for the benefit to the spleen; this helps stop diarrhea associated with qi deficiency. The astringent quality helps prevent loss of kidney essence, so the seeds are used to treat weak sexual function in men and leukorrhea in women. The seed also has calming properties that alleviate restlessness, palpitations, and insomnia.

2 - 3 Chicken Drumsticks
1 Piece Fresh Huai Shan(淮山), about 150g
40g Lotus Seed(莲子)
40g Chinese Barley(中国薏米),optional
20g Fox Nut(茨实)
20g Fu Lin(茯苓)
15g Slices Dang Gui(当归), about 5 pieces
1/2 Tablespoon Guo Qizi(枸杞子)

1 Tablespoon Rice Wine
1/4 Teaspoon Salt

1. Blanch chicken drumsticks in boiling water, rinse and set aside.
2. Rinse all the herbs, drain and add in the pot with about 1.5 litres of water and bring to bowl.
3. Peel the fresh huai shan, wash and cut into thick section then add into the water.
4. When it comes to boil, add in the chicken drumsticks and let it boil for 10 minutes on high heat.
5. Transfer to slow cooker and simmer on low heat for about 2 hours then season with salt and rice wine then serve hot.

Notes: If you just want normal plain si shen tang, then obmit the Dang Gui slices and Guo Qizi.Posted by Picasa