herbal TONIC "custom" cooking instructions - An Tai
- 400g - 600g your favourite protein; sub with your favourite veggies for a vegan option
- 1.2L Water + extra to blanch protein & soak herbs
- 4 generous slices of ginger
- (Vegan / Optional add-ins) Aromatics such as dried and fresh mushrooms, root vegetables, firm tofu, spring onion, coriander, nuts etc.
- Salt to taste
(Vegan option - disregard step 1 & 3)
- Blanch-wash protein: Add protein to a medium-sized pot & fill with enough cold water to submerge protein. Bring to boil.
- In the meantime, rinse the herbs in cold water to 'awaken' herbs.
- Once the liquid has boiled, discard the liquid & any brown foam from the pot.
- Strain rinsed herbs & place into the muslin cotton bag (if using). Add to your pot with protein, ginger & any aromatics.
- Add 1.2L of cold water & bring to boil. Simmer on low heat ~1.5-2.5 hrs.
- Season salt to taste & rest for 5 mins before serving.
- For a richer, full flavour tonic here are a few tips:
- The longer the herbal TONIC has been cooked, the more the tonic will reduce into a beautiful, darker & richer flavour. Remember, herbal soups are best cooked 'low & slow".
- Cook the night before & leave in the herbs to allow further infusion. When you are ready to serve, just bring to boil.
- Marinate the protein with salt after blanch washing. You may also add your preferred seasoning options such as sesame oil at the end.
- To make a true bone broth, it is recommended you simmer for 8+ hours to allow for the chemical breakdown needed to extract the collagen and other nutrients from the bones into the soup. You can choose to use a slow cooker / multi cooker. Make sure you use quality ingredients. You can also roast the bones in the oven for 20-30 mins at 200 degrees before adding to your pot for a more robust flavour.
- If adding more protein than the recommended amount, ensure all ingredients are submerged in water.
- Store leftover herbal soup in the fridge. When you are ready to serve, just bring to boil.
- The herbs are edible so don't be afraid to taste. You can either serve them with your tonic or discard.
- If you prefer, skim the layer of fat from the surface & discard before serving.