Saturday, September 18, 2010

Double Boiled Winter Melon Soup - Featured recipe in Group Recipes

Double boiled Winter Melon Soup

Winter Melon in Cantonese is call “Tong Kuah” so a big winter melon is called “Tai Tong Kuah”  This reminded me of a story during my childhood.  My mum’s second step sister was one year younger than me so we were weekends playmates.  If I remembered correctly, when she was 6 years old, she had to perform for her school concert. She had to sing a song and I clearly remembered there was one line in the lyrics in Mandarin “Woh se ker tai tong kuah” (I am a big winter melon). During the peformance, when she sang that line, the audience started to laugh but she started to cry!  She was basically a very shy and sensitive kid and I guessed she felt embarrassed when people laughed. She thought they were laughing at her.  Actually, they were laughing at the lyrics of the song not her.  The reason being, when one calls you a “Tai Tong Kuah” means you are a clumsy and stupid fellow.  However, drinking this soup is not so stupid after all.  It has all the best ingredients in it and it is so delicious!  This makes a perfect healthy one dish meal. All you have to do is to have a bowl of steamed fragrant rice with it. 


1.8 to 2 kg Winder Melon

5 or 6 dried scallops (whole)
3 dried shitake mushroom (finely diced)
4 water chestnut (finely diced)
150 gm chicken breast meat diced)
20gm young ginger (finely diced)
1 ts vegetable oil
1 ts sesame oil (optional)
1 cube chicken stock (without MSG) (if you have homemade chicken broth, then you replace water with it and you do not need the cube chicken stock)
Salt and white pepper to taste

Preparation of Melon:
Stand the melon on a flat surface.  Use a pencil to make markings around it about ¼ height of the melon from the top.  On a cutting board, place melon on its side and cut along the markings to make the lid.  Scoop out seeds and pulp until wall is about ¾ inches thick.  Discard the seeds and pulp and place melon in a heat proof dish. 

Preparation of ingredients:
Heat vegetable oil in wok and sauté ginger and dried mushroom till ginger is fragrant.  Put them in the melon. Then add all the other ingredients in the melon and cover them with water. Close the top and secure the lid with tooth picks. Transfer the dish on the rack in a large wok or steamer and steam over medium heat for 1 – ½ hours.  Before serving, season with salt and white pepper and a drop or two of sesame oil.

How to serve:
You can serve the whole melon in the heat proof dish or you can scoop our the flesh of the melon into the soup and transfer everything into a serving bowl.  


  1. Yumm - O!!
    I truly miss Winter Melon Soup. There used to be a little "hole in the wall" in Atlanta that a buddy and I would frequent weekly.
    Our order was always the same:
    Winter Melon Soup
    Fried Green Beans
    Stuffed Tofu

    Thanks for posting!! this looks and sounds very similar to his


  2. Hi Toby,
    Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope to see you again

  3. This sounds like a very interesting soup! Looks beautiful and can't wait to try it!

  4. My parents make this soup all the time!

  5. My parents make this soup all the time.

  6. Very "yoon"... it has been some time since I last double boiled the melon.... Lots of work but it is worth it... the taste is really something!

  7. I remember I have tried boiling this before. Made a mess coz the melon which I bought was not "old" enough. End up the soup seep out from the bottom LOL

  8. Thanks Quay Po, I almost forgotten about cooking this yummy soup !! But yours is too dry !! I love to buy 1 medium size or 1/2 a winter melon, wash the skin well and remove the seeds and diced all ingredients and put them into the melon and cover it with a metal plate or it's top. I never use wrap or foil as those are very poisonous when we cook our food with them ! If I dice the melon to cook, I was told to include the skin too !! so each time I will wash the skin well and dice and cook with it !! @Small Kucing, you have to place your melon into a bowl so that if it break, the soup will be collected in the bowl. Never cook too long. If the melon is too young, cook the soup first then at the last 1/2 hr, pour them into the melon and continue to steam it !! 100% no leaking !! Happy Cooking !!


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