Chinese Herbal Chicken Soup is a popular dish that has been cherished for centuries in Chinese culture. This nutritious soup has also gained popularity in other parts of Asia, including Vietnam. In this guide, I will show you a modified version of the traditional Chinese Herbal Chicken Soup, incorporating popular ingredients such as lotus seeds, red dates (jujube), goji berries, and carrots.
Chinese tradition holds that the consumption of Herbal Chicken Soup promotes overall well-being and vitality. According to ancient beliefs, the combination of herbs and chicken in the soup nourishes the body, boosts the immune system, and strengthens the bones. These notions are backed by modern science, as the ingredients in the soup offer a range of health benefits.
Lotus seeds, a prominent ingredient in this soup, are known for their high content of protein, fiber, and essential minerals. They are believed to improve digestion and promote healthy blood circulation. Red dates, commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine, are rich in antioxidants and are known to enhance the immune system. Goji berries, often hailed as a superfood, are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support overall health and vitality. Carrots, another vital component, contribute essential nutrients, including beta-carotene, vitamin K, and potassium, which promote healthy vision and cardiovascular health.
Ingredients and Nutrition values
To make this aromatic and nourishing soup, you will need the following ingredients (detailed recipe at the end of the post):
Flavorful and tender thighs forms the base of the Chinese Herbal Chicken Soup. They are a rich source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. Protein also plays a crucial role in maintaining healthy skin, hair, and nails. Additionally, chicken thighs contain iron, zinc, and B vitamins, which support energy production and contribute to overall vitality.
These are the edible seeds found within the lotus flower. These seeds have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for their numerous health benefits. They are an excellent source of plant-based protein and are low in fat. Lotus seeds are known to have calming properties and are often used to alleviate stress and anxiety. They are also believed to promote healthy sleep patterns and improve digestion.
Red dates, also known as jujubes, are small, sweet fruits that have been used in Chinese medicine for centuries. They are rich in antioxidants, which help protect the body against free radicals and oxidative stress. Red dates are known to support liver health and boost the immune system. They are also believed to improve blood circulation and strengthen the spleen.
These bright red berries that are packed with nutrients and antioxidants. They are considered a superfood and are highly valued in traditional Chinese medicine. Goji berries are a rich source of vitamin C, which supports immune function and collagen production. They are also known to promote healthy vision and protect against age-related eye diseases. Goji berries have anti-inflammatory properties and are believed to support cardiovascular health.
Carrots are root vegetables that are widely recognized for their vibrant orange color and sweet flavor. They are a rich source of beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is essential for maintaining healthy vision, supporting immune function, and promoting skin health. Carrots are also a good source of fiber, which aids in digestion and helps regulate blood sugar levels.
Ginger is a spice with a distinctive flavor and aroma. It has been used in traditional medicine for its potent anti-inflammatory and digestive properties. Ginger is believed to soothe the digestive system, alleviate nausea, and reduce inflammation in the body. It is also rich in antioxidants and has immune-boosting properties.
These ingredients combines together to create a rich and sweet flavors. The chicken thighs provide a rich and savory base, while the lotus seeds add a delicate nutty taste. The red dates and goji berries bring a subtle sweetness. The ginger adds a warm and comforting element, while the carrots lend a vibrant color and a slightly sweet flavor. Altogether, these ingredients create a wholesome and delicious soup that satisfies both the palate and the body.
Incorporating these ingredients into the Chinese Herbal Chicken Soup not only enhances its flavor but also adds a range of health benefits. From the protein-rich chicken thighs to the calming lotus seeds, the antioxidant-packed red dates, and goji berries, and the vitamin-rich carrots and ginger, each ingredient contributes to the overall nourishing and therapeutic properties of the soup. By combining these ingredients, the soup becomes a delightful and healthful dish that supports overall well-being.
How to Make Chinese Herbal Chicken Soup
Now, let’s explore the step-by-step process of preparing this delightful soup:
- Start by soaking the lotus seeds in lukewarm water for at least 2 hours. It’s essential to avoid using cool or cold water, as it may affect the texture of the lotus seeds.
- In a pot, combine the chicken thighs, ginger, soaked lotus seeds, red dates, and goji berries. Add a pinch of salt to enhance the flavors. If you are using a pressure cooker or instant pot, close the lid and cook the ingredients for 15-20 minutes.
- Once the cooking time is complete, release the pressure in the pot, open the lid, and add the carrots. Bring the soup to a boil again and then turn off the heat. Adjust the taste by adding salt and a few teaspoons of soy sauce if desired. For an added touch of freshness, garnish the soup with cilantro/coriander or green onions.
Storing and Reheating Leftovers
If you find yourself with leftover soup, you can store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
To reheat, simply pour the desired amount into a saucepan and gently warm it over low heat until it reaches your desired temperature. This will ensure that the flavors remain intact and the soup maintains its nourishing qualities.
- 2 chicken thighs
- 1 cup lotus seeds
- 10-15 red dates
- 1 tbsp goji berries
- 5-7 Ginger slices
- 2 carrots
- Salt and soy sauce
- Step 1. Start by soaking the lotus seeds in lukewarm water for at least 2 hours. It's essential to avoid using cool or cold water, as it may affect the texture of the lotus seeds.
- Step 2. In a pot, combine the chicken thighs, ginger, soaked lotus seeds, red dates, and goji berries. Add a pinch of salt to enhance the flavors. If you are using a pressure cooker or instant pot, close the lid and cook the ingredients for 15-20 minutes.
- Step 3. Once the cooking time is complete, release the pressure in the pot, open the lid, and add the carrots. Bring the soup to a boil again and then turn off the heat. Adjust the taste by adding salt and a few teaspoons of soy sauce if desired.
- Step 4. For an added touch of freshness, garnish the soup with coriander or green onions.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 250