Collagen beauty-boosting soup
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.