This soup is delicious and gives a good idea of how you can play around with edible Chinese herbs. The purpose was to give workshop participants a sample of how easy yet deeply satisfying herbal broths can be, and also how strongly you can "feel the Qi" from them!
Step 1: either make your own broth (vegetable or meat), or use an organic pre-made broth of your choice. I usually use 4 cups of broth and add additional water as needed.
Step 2: Get the herbs ready to add to the broth. For this recipe I used Huang Jing, Kombu, 1 dried Maitake mushroom, Hong Zao, Ren Shen, Gou Qi Zi, & Huang Qi. In this group, only the Huang Qi (stick-like root at the bottom) is not edible and will be removed after cooking.
HINT: If using both edible & non-edible herbs, be sure to place non-edible herbs in a muslin bag or cheesecloth so you can easily separate & remove them.
Here you can see how the same herbs from the 1st picture have plumped up and softened. They will now be very easy to cut into little pieces.
Step 8: Once the seeds release their scent and begin to lightly pop, add all of the shredded veggies. Then add the herbal broth. Add additional water if needed to make a nice soup consistency.
HINT: When cooking with Chinese herbs, it's best to keep additional spices to a minimum. In this soup, I added about 1/4 the amount of Panch Phora and Curry that I would normally use.
Step 10: Remove from heat and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes. Then add 1 can Coconut Milk, stir well, and it's ready to serve. Enjoy!! (Makes about 8-10 servings)