Lotus and spare rib soup 蓮藕排骨湯
To be honest when I made the soup tab on the website I really wanted to make something super grand and fancy like shark fin soup ( yes I do know it's illegal - just sayin')... golden melon scallop soup or something like that. But I went to 99 ranch market ( local Chinese supermarket) and I saw these beautiful lotus roots on sale ( Score!) and I thought ... perfect! Lotus roots is one those veggies that you look at it on the outside and think " Wow it's pretty ugly" THEN you peel it and start slicing it and it's nature's most amazing design. You can stir fry it to have that amazing crunch or put it in a soup! I did put in some Chinese medicinal ingredients that may scare some newcomers but the dried red date and goji berries actually have a hint of sweetness that is very pleasant and isn't that strong. You can pick it out if you want to =)
Small lotus root peeled and sliced very thinly ( about 10 inches or less)
0.5 lbs of spare rib
2 dried Shitake mushroom (soaked then sliced)
2 dried red date (soak in warm water)
2 tsp of dried goji berry or wolfberry (soak in warm water)
4- 4.5 cups of water
Salt and ground white pepper to taste
After slicing the lotus root very thinly put it in a bowl of water with a little bit of salt. This helps remove excess starch and keeps your soup more clear. Put the spareribs in a small pot and cover with just enough water to cover it. Bring the pot to a boil then remove and rinse the spare ribs - this is to remove all the excess blood and scum. In a larger pot combine the spare ribs, lotus root, dates, goji berries, mushrooms and water. Bring to a boil and then allow it simmer with the lid on for an hour, stir occasionally and add water if needed. Add salt and ground white pepper at the very end to taste. Remember this is suppose to be a soup lets the ingredients shine so not too much salt.
*For those of you who have a "大同電鍋" in English it is like a pressure cooker and rice cooker in one - that's what I use. Mainly because my mom bought me a super cute pink one - and I try to use it every chance I get. 1 cup on the outside of the pot should do the trick. Once the lever changes to warm mode - let it steam in there for another 15-20 minutes before opening it.