Food For Four

Lotus Root Soup with Pork Ribs

Posted on | April 2, 2010 | Asian Recipes, Chinese | 6 Comments

Lotus root soup

Brrrr. Yesterday we woke up to a cold 16°C. The reality of winter approaching suddenly hits. I guess we have been spoilt with a very warm autumn during the past month that I thought we were still in summer. Even with the warm weather, the kids and Husband were sick during the last two weeks. It’s always awful when the young ones are sick as all they do is whine and cry. Thank goodness I have a stronger immunity and escape unscathed.

Lotus root

The other day I noticed my local fruit shop was selling fresh lotus root. I was introduced to lotus root soup during my one month confinement after Baby S was born. My MIL boiled lotus root with red bean (or was it black bean?) Lotus root doesn’t have much taste but I love the crunchy texture and it is rich in dietary fibre and other vitamins and minerals. The lotus root has interesting hollow pattern inside and I think sliced lotus root looks very pretty.

Herbal soup is more of a Chinese thing but I started to cook herbal soups a lot more since I was introduced to it by my MIL. I also have a cookbook with lots of delicious herbal soup recipes which I’m hoping to make good use of during this Winter.

For this lotus root soup I have kept it simple with just pork ribs, red dates, lotus seeds and candy dates to give it that extra sweetness.

Lotus Soup Pork Ribs


1 rack of pork ribs
1 small lotus root
2 candy dates
1/4 cup dried lotus seeds
1/4 cup red dates
2 litres of water


Soak the red dates for at least 30 minutes. Rinse it with water a couple of times after soaking cause I noticed my red dates left some impurities after soaking.

Soak the dried lotus seeds separately for at least 30 mintues. Then drain.

Cut the pork ribs into strips. Blanch the ribs in boiling water to remove any impurities. Boil 2 litres of water in clean pot. Then add the pork ribs. Skimming away any impurities.

Using a peeler, remove the skin of the lotus root. Slice the lotus root 1 cm thick. Then add the lotus root to the pot. Add the red dates and candy dates. Cover and cook on low heat.

After 20 minutes, add the lotus seeds. Cover and cook on low heat. Cook for another 1 hour to 1.5 hours or until the pork ribs falls off the bone and the red dates and lotus seeds are soft.

Serve the soup hot.

Lotus root soup with pork ribs

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6 Responses to “Lotus Root Soup with Pork Ribs”

  1. Ellie (Almost Bourdain)
    April 3rd, 2010 @ 3:58 pm

    This is one of my favourite soup. Unfortunately I have not been making it much for a while because my husband and daughter don’t like it. Reading your post makes me miss this soup so very much!

  2. Amy @
    April 3rd, 2010 @ 9:23 pm

    I hated lotus root in my youth, mostly its because my mother force fed it to me. But now that I am older and I’ve broadened my horizons I have come to appreciate it in all its warmth and beauty.

    What is the name of the cookbook with all the herbal soup recipes? I can’t help but ask, I am beyond obsessed.

  3. Yen
    April 3rd, 2010 @ 10:05 pm

    @ Ellie: My kids doesn’t like lotus root. My husband is not too keen on the lotus root but he likes herbal soups.

    @ Amy: How does your mum cook the lotus root?
    The cookbook I have is called “The world of Nourishing & Fine Soups” by Kenny Chen. My husband’s uncle send this book to us from Malaysia. Apart from the recipes it lists the purpose of each ingredient.

  4. Mily
    January 31st, 2012 @ 4:05 pm

    I was looking for recipes for herbal Chinese soup to make for my two boys (5yrs and 3yrs) and can’t wait to try out this soup recipe. Thank you!

  5. Brittany
    January 3rd, 2014 @ 7:12 am

    I have never seem lotus root before but I love to try new things, I live near Seattle, Wa. Do you have any suggestions of where to find fresh lotus root?

  6. Yen
    January 7th, 2014 @ 10:11 pm

    Hi Brittany, thank you for stopping by my blog. Unfortunately I’m unable to help you on where to buy lotus root in Seattle as I live in Sydney Australia.

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