You might hate eating food with coriander, and also find it weird and unimaginable to have century eggs cooked in soup… but that’s not the case in this soup dish.. Such combination in my soup might sound unappealing but it was indeed very aromatic and delicious to consume. And don’t be surprised, this was one of the most popular options of hot pot soup base in many restaurants in Hong Kong. I was initially in doubt with such soup option, too, but looking at so many of the reviews from those experienced diners, they actually well commented this as hot pot soup base. Hence, I thought it wouldn’t go wrong to go with the choice of majority, esp the locals’ recommendation. So I tried the soup the very first time when I had my hotpot meal in Hong Kong. And, it surprised me pleasantly. It was such a delicious soup with natural aromas and sweetness yielded from the corianders and century eggs in the soup!
I couldn’t find this soup when came back to Singapore. I thought I should just try to cook at home. And, here we go!
Besides its refreshing aromas, you wouldn’t actually taste much of the coriander in the soup. It’s not obvious. And this soup yielded natural sweetness with both the main ingredients as well as an addition of water chestnuts. That for sure able to satisfy your taste bud. Yes, with the addition of water chestnuts, this soup provides better cooling effect, at the same time, adds natural sweetness to it. So it’s not necessary to use it as hotspot soup base, just drink up during meals, like we did.
2 century eggs, cut into halves or wedges
A bunch of coriander leaves (also named Chinese parsley), trimmed root and rinsed
10 pieces of water chestnuts, peeled and soaked in water for 1 hour
2-3 pcs of bony pork ribs
1 teaspoon of salt
Pinch of grounded white pepper
A pot of water, 80% filled (about 1000ml)
Bring a pot of water to a boil over high heat.
Add in meat bone, chestnuts.
Lower heat to medium-low fire, simmer for 30 minutes.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Place in coriander and century eggs.
Simmer soup for another 10 minutes before heat off.
Let the cooking stand for another couple of minutes with lid on before ladling out from the pot. Serve hot.
Post Note 2016: Sometimes, I would add some handmade chicken meat balls to cater for my son’s share. Simply season minced chicken meat with pepper and light soy sauce. Add some oil in soup pot to brown minced garlic. Roll minced chicken into balls and sauté till all sides are slightly browned. Then, pour water into the pot to cook the soup following my recipe as usual. This is optional. :)
Tips: Century eggs are available off the shelves. Simply peel off the muddy layer wrapped around the shell (if any), and then, peel off the shell. Slice the dark century eggs into wedges. No boiling is required. * You may like to serve with some preserved ginger slices for diners who like having the century egg from the soup.