Sunday, March 12, 2006

Pressure Tonic

Work has been extremely stressful over the last two months and it does not look like the pressure will be letting up any time in the near future. Feeling a bit snowed under, and having caught myself snapping at colleagues and hubby, I'm pretty sure my blood pressure is working overtime! Before another week of hell begins, I decided to boost this frail human body of mine with a little traditional Chinese tonic.
LingZhi Ginseng Chicken Soup

The Ling-Zhi mushroom (also known as reichi in Japan) was traditionally a Chinese Imperial tonic, partaken by ancient emperors to promote longevity and good health. Reputed to reduce high blood pressure, hypertension and insomnia, it supposedly nourishes the brain and calms the nerves. The Ginseng root, another Chinese Imperial and Korean traditional tonic, is reputed to improve blood circulation, and increase the body's resistance to stress.

Regardless of whether any of the above alleged benefits have been scientifically proven or not, the fact that I have been raised in a Cantonese soup-drinking family means that instead of reaching for a pill or some other quick-fix remedy, brewing, steaming or double-boiling a pot of herbal tonic soup is my 'pill of choice'. Unfortunately, such herbal soups normally require at least one and a half up to two hours of brewing over a slow slow fire, and thus can only be partaken on weekends. *sigh*, I'm sure the efficacy of the whole thing is much reduced by such infrequent boosts! Still, every little drop counts and if you are interested to get into some of this action next weekend or earlier, the recipe is fool-proof:
  • for two to three persons, I used half a black chicken - clean chicken and cut into 2 to 3 pieces
  • blanch chicken in hot boiling water, remove chicken and throw away the water - helps to reduce the oil in the soup
  • rinse the following chinese herbs - 10 to 12 slices of lingzhi, 10 gm of ginseng slices (altho' in the soup tonight, I used a whole ginseng root), a small handful of 'keichi' (qouqi or dried wolfberries), a small handful of dried longan (the last two items are required to add some sweetness to the soup as the lingzhi slices have a slight bitter taste)
  • place chicken and all the dried herbs in a double-boiler / steam-pot, add 3 to 4 cups of water
  • steam/double-boil for at least two and a half to three hours on a low fire
  • just before serving, add a little salt to taste


Anonymous slurp! said...

same same, so many problems inside-ouside. difference is i destress by having sometime alone doing irrevalent stuffs ;) Next month will be better, so hang on :)

3/13/2006 02:19:00 AM  
Blogger boo_licious said...

Poor Cath! Cheer up and I'm sure things will get better. That lingzhi soup looks like the right thing to destress with.

3/13/2006 05:27:00 AM  
Blogger eatzycath said...

dear dear slurp! the irrelevant stuff you talk about is so so relevant :), sometimes you need a little bit of irrelevance to balance out the seriousness of life!

thanks, boo_licious for your kind thoughts!

3/13/2006 10:10:00 PM  
Blogger Godknows said...

sounds like a very healthy soup. I usually go somewhere by myself to release my stress

3/14/2006 10:38:00 AM  
Anonymous pfong said...

Nothing like chicken soup to evoke a little home cooked comfort.

Hope things settle down an work for you cath.

3/15/2006 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger eatzycath said...

dear VG, I know exactly what you mean, and you will see that in the next post titled "down, down, down the rabbit-hole" :)

thanks pfong!

3/15/2006 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger fooDcrazEE said...

nice comfort food u had...good for ya..relax on the hubby ...give him a break...chuckle.

take care cath ....dont let the stress gets into ur system. Purge them out.

3/17/2006 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger eatzycath said...

thanks foodcrazee for the comforting words :)

3/18/2006 10:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a good post.

6/17/2009 05:54:00 PM  

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