Col­la­gen beauty-boost­ing soup

The New Paper - - LIFESTYLE - HEDY KHOO

Fol­low­ing up on last week’s col­la­gen-packed peach gum dessert soup, here is a nour­ish­ing savoury soup made with in­gre­di­ents prized as beauty ton­ics in tra­di­tional Chi­nese medicine.

Dried un­fried fish maw – fish air blad­der – is an­other gelati­nous food that I han­ker for.

Good qual­ity fish maw should not have any fishy odour.

The man­ager of the dried goods shop that I have been fre­quent­ing, Mr Wal­ter Chua, 47, in­tro­duced me to yet an­other gelati­nous in­gre­di­ent – wild yel­low gold ear mush­room (Tremella mesen­ter­ica).

It is sim­i­lar in shape to the more com­mon snow fun­gus. The wild yel­low gold ear mush­room is much pricier and re­quires overnight soak­ing. The tex­ture is soft and jelly-like.

In TCM, the tremella mesen­ter­ica is re­garded as nour­ish­ing for the bones, skin, lungs, stom­ach and kid­neys, and it helps main­tain weight.

I also added a type of dried mush­room called ba xi gu in Man­darin (lit­er­ally, Brazil mush­room or Agar­i­cus brasilien­sis).

This mush­room has sev­eral names, in­clud­ing himemat­su­take (princess mat­su­take in English). The mush­room it­self is deeply aro­matic and im­parts much flavour to the soup.

hedykhoo@sph.com.sg

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