Pigs Calf and Radish Soup, 猪蹄罗卜湯
A delicious rich and creamy broth, made from just 2 simple ingredients
I've always wondered how my aunt makes her rich broths, which would fuel weeks of soup varieties. It blew my mind when I learned just how simple it is to make. This soup is a rich broth made from pig's calf. For our first post on the Substack, we’re going to bring back a crowd favorite and a staple in my household. My mom always had a quart stashed away in the freezer just in case. Hope you enjoy it!
2 lb of pig’s calf/foot (lamb or goat can be substituted for a more lean soup)
1 whole Daikon radish
First, slice the pork into chunks
Slice the Daikon radish into comparable chunks
Bring a pot to a boil with a few big chunks of ginger. Bring a second pot of water to a boil with the same amount of water.
Once the water is boiling, add the pork to the first pot with ginger
Stir the pork in the water. Here, the goal is not to cook the pork, but simply to clean the pork, remove the initial oils, and add a slight ginger flavor/scent
After a short stir, when the oils have released from the meat, transfer the pork to the second pot of boiling water
Again, the goal is not to cook the pork. Just use the boiling water to rinse the pork clean. Then, drain the pork and set it aside.
Heat up the wok with oil and salt
Place strips of ginger in the wok and stir fry for 15 seconds.
Add the pork and stir fry for 30 seconds
The pork should be browned at this point
Add radish and stir fry for 1 minute.
Add enough cold water to cover the pork and radish mixture in the wok.
Cover and bring the pork and radish mixture to a boil
Once boiling, open the lid. You’ll find a thin layer of oils and fats. Carefully spoon off the top layer of oils and discard.
Lastly, transfer the entire mixture to a slow cooker and let it simmer on high until the preferred meat and radish tenderness is reached.
(Substitute: If a slow cooker is not present, this mixture can also be simmered in the wok on the stove on the lowest stove setting.)
Typically the soup will be ready in about an hour. For softer pork, you can simmer for longer.
Once you’re done cooking, add salt to taste. Some people may argue they don’t like to salt their food. Don’t be self-defeating, add the salt. It makes a huge difference.
You might be surprised to learn that you can repeat this recipe for all sorts of meats: lamb, goat, pork bone, deer/venison, oxtail. It’s a pretty versatile way to make really rich soups for any occasion. Enjoy!
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