Soup of the day


When I brushed my teeth last night I found my gums slightly swollen and according to my mom that is a sign of having too much  ” heat” in the body. ( If you want to know what this is, click here)

Speaking of my mom, I am beginning to “get” her.  She is now too old to do any cooking and one of the things I missed most is her soup.  She made really awesome soup when I was a child.  She seemed to have a wealth of recipes for soup and there was always something to cure whatever ailed us or suitable for the weather.   My brothers never quite appreciated her soup as much as I did, and therefore I always had a double portion of it.   Now that I am the chief cook and bottle washer, most of the meal planning and executing have fallen into my less than capable hands.   Unfortunately soup is not one of our regular items on the table unless I have time to make it, mainly on my days off.   ( But then, I usually ended up doing something else.)

I never understood the benefits of mom’s soup until now.  The more I read about it, the more I understand why mom made a big deal with her soup making.  Even now as I talk to her on the phone, she will give me all sort of advice as to what kind of soup to make for the family.  The same goes with my mother in law, we love it when she comes to visit because she would always make soup.  She came over about couple of months ago, and unfortunately she needs a walker to move about because of an accident on her icy driveway.  Standing becomes painful for her, and we feel really sad because her soup-making  days are over. 

Daughter #2  has inherited the love of soup from both of her grandmas and will talk about it once in a while as to remind my duty as a Chinese mom. She knows that I am not really the typical kind and has accepted it graciously.  Couple of weeks ago she dislocated her knee cap and has been hobbling on her crutches.  She is recovering slowly but still suffers from the stiffness.  One day she sort of mentioned matter of factly about which kind of soup she should have to improve her joints.   I guess she succeeded to remind me what has been missing from my motherly duties.  I remember being told once that chicken feet soup is good for the joints.  So I did what I was supposed to do and she was very appreciative of it.

Now this morning, as I was lunching with her, I complained  about the heat in my body and knew I need to have some “cooling” soup.   The only one I can pull out from my memory banks is the apple and fig soup.   So it is now the soup of the day.  This time the soup is for mom.

Apple and Figs soup


1 pound of pork soup bones

2 apples, peeled and quartered ( any type will do)

6 dried figs

1 carrot ( peeled and chopped)

1 tbsp of apricot seeds ( available in asian stores)


1. Wash pork bones, put in a pot of boiling water for a couple of minutes.

2. Drain pork bones, rinse.

3. Put pork bones and the rest of ingredients in a pot of cold water, bring it to boil.

4. Turn down heat and simmer for two hours until bones are tender. 

5. enjoy.

Variation: you can put Chinese pears in with the apples.  I had tried it once without putting meat in and it tasted fine, but almost doubled the amount of fruits.


About mamaj

mom with two grown up girls, children pastor, avid knitter, coffee-lover, bear-collector. I love reading, hanging out with my girl friends and yes, I am owned by a golden lab, Jaden.

One response »

  1. I remember trying the Chinese pear soup for the first time once at the Tai’s..! I loved it and realized that there was Chinese soup that I haven’t had before (and for awhile, bugged my own mother to make some)! Since then, I’ve forgotten about it, until your post. Now I know what to do – thanks 🙂

    The first soup I thought of when you said “cooling” was bittermelon soup hehe. But, I also wonder if chilled watermelon soup would be cooling? (non-Asian)

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