When I saw the Chinese Heritage: Stocks & Soups class conducted by Chef David Yip offered at Shermay's Cooking School, I registered immediately. So far, I've been relying on cook books and internet recipes to cook soups, but I reckoned it would be beneficial to learn from a master in traditional chinese cuisine.
And I was really glad that I attended the class. Chef David was humorous, and very generous in showing his knowledge and know-hows of the kitchen, throwing bits and pieces of gossipy anecdotes, giving additional reicpes, making the entire 3hr class very enjoyable.
The recipes demo-ed were:
- Basic meat stock
- Braised soy sauce chicken
- Mui Chai pork
- Basic fish stock
- Snakehead fish noodle
- Watercress soup
- Double-boiled chicken with chinese herbs
The first soup we got to taste was the Double-Boiled Chicken with Chinese Herbs - Shou Wu 首乌. All along I had the misconception that Shou Wu is very bitter and would make the soup taste bitter, but I was so wrong! The soup was very fragrant, sweet and soothing. It was so good that most participants went for seconds, myself included. I am definitely going to cook this!
The second soup that we tasted was the Watercress soup. The watercress soup that I made at home usually tasted flat, either that or it had a strong "grassy" taste. But this was very mild, with a slight tinge of sweetness and subtle taste of watercress. I'm sure my family would welcome this.
And the last dish we tried was the Snakehead fish noodle cooked using fish stock. The milky colour you see was not milk but protein "released" from fish (stock) after cooking for sometime. Some hawkers added milk to the sliced fish noodles these days instead of making effort to prepare fish stock. The soup was so yummy, no fishy taste or smell at all. It had a very natural sweetness, rich yet not heavy on the palate. The fish was perfectly cooked as well with very nice texture (slightly QQ but tender and remained intact without breaking).
I must say that I was very impressed with this class and it had been a while since I last enjoyed such an outing (me-time!). Chef David has 2 more classes upcoming but I don't think I can make it for those classes, next time perhaps.