Ga tan – A Vietnamese nutritious food

Stewed Sweet Herbal Chicken Soup (Gà Hầm Thuốc Bắc) is really delicious and healthy. Most herbal chicken soup can be bitter and kids do not like them. This Traditional Vietnamese Food, however, is sweet due to the ingredients used. With a combination of American dried fig, red dates, honey dates, gojiberries, dried longan, pei ji and yuk chuk , you can be assured of a sweet tasting soup filled with goodness.
This amount of herbs used in this soup is estimates only and do not come under any special recipe from the Chinese medicine store.
One of the common ways to use tonic herbs in China is cooking them in the form of a soup along with chicken. This is because chicken is thought to bring out and enhance the tonifying and nourishing aspects of the herbs. Most of the tonic herbs have a pleasant taste that does not adversely affect the flavorful quality of mealtime soups made without the herbs. In fact, when properly selected, the additional herbs produce a highly desirable taste and texture for the soup.

The ingredients 

To make this Traditional Vietnamese Food, you need to collect the ingredients. Some of them are quite hard to look for, so you need to ask for help of chef masters. The herbs used are from top (clockwise) – red dates, dried longan, American dried figs, pei ji, honey dates and yuk chuk.

The root herbs-astragalus, codonopsis, and dioscorea-are classified by Chinese herbalists as qi tonics. They benefit digestion, aid absorption of nutrients, improve cardiac function, and enhance energy. The two dried fruits, lycium and longan, are classified as blood tonics; they are frequently used to treat anemia, reduce fidgeting, and benefit sleep. Black fungus is reputed to alleviate dryness and benefit the circulation; it adds a satisfying texture to the soup. Polygonatum is classified as a yin tonic; it helps restore moisture to dried membranes. Lotus seed is a mild tonic and sedative useful for alleviating nervousness and irritability.

Stewed Sweet Herbal Chicken Soup via

To make the soup, place about 2 pounds of chicken (best with bones included) with the skin removed in a medium sized pot and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and remove any residue that floats to the top at that time. Add in the whole package of herbs, 2 cloves of crushed or grated garlic, 2 thin slices of fresh ginger, and a teaspoon of salt (the amount of garlic, ginger, and salt can be adjusted to your taste; these amounts are for a mild flavoring). Bring back to a slow boil, cover, and simmer for about 50-60 minutes.

Add sliced fresh vegetables, such as carrots and celery (for a more warming effect, use green onions), and various greens and squashes at this time and simmer again for an additional 5-10 minutes to soften them. Then add 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of sesame oil, and 1 teaspoon of wine (or mild vinegar). Remove from heat. All the herb materials are edible except the astragalus, which is too fibrous, and this item should be removed before serving (it is the flat herb that retains a woody appearance).

The package of herbs contains about 5.5 ounces. This recipe makes enough soup for four servings (a large bowl of soup each) providing about 40 grams of dried herbs. For individuals recovering from serious illness or other debilitating experience, the soup can be taken daily for about one week to help restore strength. Others may wish to enjoy this dish about once a week for nourishing the blood and getting a great energy boost. Serve with a side dish of rice to make a complete meal.

How to make it

Stewed Sweet Herbal Chicken Soup via Bep nha Tin Tin

Clean the chicken legs and pour boiling water over it. This will help to remove some unpleasant “smell”. Bring water in double boiler to boil. Place herbs on bottom of a double boiler and place chicken on top of the herbs. Add the 700 ml boiling water and cover lid. Double boil for 3 hours. Add salt to taste before serving. This is only simple of making this Traditional Vietnamese Food, you could search more information to make perfect dish.  

To sum up, if you want the soup to be healthier, you might want to remove the chicken skin prior to cooking. This Traditional Vietnamese Food is really a healthy food for patient, especially the person who is getting sick. Hope you love this post and have a great day.

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