Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Kidney Tonic Soup

The best part about blogging about soups is that I attract a lot of similar minded people and we become friends and then we start exchanging soup recipes and before you know it, we're diehard soup-lovers and soup recipe exchangers!

Maybe SoupQueen should start a Soup Club! Any takers?

Anyway, last week, I got a wonderful email from Grace Poon who lives in Australia. She was so kind to send me a soup recipe - a kidney tonic soup - to share with everyone here.

It's taken from (I believe it's always honest to credit back the source) and it's a soup for those suffering from backaches.

According to the article accompanying the soup recipe, lower back pain is a result of not having enough Qi in the kidney and liver. Lower back pain could also result from stagnation of Qi in the blood.

The kidney tonic soup suggested contains a main ingredient of Eucommia Bark or Duzhong. Duzhong, I read in a TCM book, is actually the name of the man who ate the herb and got well. The things one learns!

Duzhong invigorates Qi and blood circulation. It is a bark of a tree but it resembles some scaly snake skin but don't let that put you off. There are stranger herbs in TCM and this is really a tree bark. Speaking of stranger stuff, there's frog hasma which actually comes from the oviduct of the female wood frog but that's another blog post for another day!.

Pregnant women should not take this soup. Invigorating blood and Qi might be rather harmful for foetuses.

Kidney Tonic Soup

300gm lean pork or chicken

11 gm Duzhong/Eucommia bark
9 gm Niuxi/Acyranthes Root
10 gm Baijitian/Morinda Root
10 gm Huangji/Astralagus Root
15 gm Dangshen/Conodopsis
10 gm Keichi/Medlar seeds
10 gm Dried Longan Flesh
5 bowls of water

* Apparently you can get the herbs in a packet from Eu Yan Sang medical shops if you can't be bothered to pick and combine them.

Bring water to a boil.

Scald meat (remove chicken skin if using chicken - otherwise you will need to skim oil off the soup once the soup's done and we busy ladies really have to be fast and effective sometimes so off with the chicken skin).

Put meat and herbs into pot and boil for 10 minutes on high heat.

Cover tightly, simmer on the slowest heat for 3-4 hours.

Season with salt and sugar if needed. Serve hot.

Grateful thanks to Grace Poon for this kidney tonic recipe!

One more thing, if you wonder what a certain herb looks like, just type the herb name into Google and then select IMAGES. You will find the photos of the herbs!
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