Dried Bok Choy Soup aka Choy Kon Tong [菜乾湯] is a classic and simple soup to prepare. The recipe is simple but first you must know how to re-dehydrate the dried bok choy. Could be a little time consuming for this step but once you get the dried vegetable re-dehydrated, the remaining cooking process is easy be it you cook it over the stove, in the pressure cooker or Thermal Cooker.
Here, I used the thermal cooker where I need not have to watch over the stove or afraid that the soup may dry up due to the long simmering time.
The end result is a hearty and delicious soup where the vegetables have become tender, chewy and stringy. It has absorbed the flavours of the other ingredients.
Preparing the Choy Kon a day ahead of cooking time – soak it in water for several hours or overnight. Rinse and squeeze them several times to get rid of the dark colour, sand impurities and to soften the Choy Kon. Cut off the base of the heads and remove the tough heads. Try to open up the leaves that sticked together. You can prepare a whole pack of dried vegetables and keep the unused portion for other dishes like braised choy kon with pork belly or roasted pork.
When done, boil them in a pot of water for 30 minutes to soften. Remove from water and rinse again. Cut into 2-3 inch sections and it is ready for cooking.
200 gm redehydrated choy kon – cut into 2-3 inch sections
6 red dates
1 small dried cuttlefish or a handful of small dried scallops
a few cloves of garlic with skin
150 gm soft bone pork ribs or more [own preference]
chicken stock granules and salt to taste