You know something? Chinese, Indian and Malay tastebuds are different. It takes someone adventurous to embrace all the flavours and enjoys them. For example, most Chinese may grimaced when we mentioned about eating lamb or beef. They will say it smells.
Meanwhile, Malays and Indians may find Chinese foods too bland. So, what about the 1Malaysian soup title I am using? Well, everyone is 1This, 1That, so I also 1Malaysian it. One day, I make 1Malaysian Rojak too.
As a Hainanese, we love our beef, lamb and other exotic meats eaten by the angmohs. You see, our ancestors were cooks during the colonial times. So, we naturally have the tastebuds for gamey meats.
This morning, I bought 500 grams of cheap beef meant for stewing. Got myself a white radish, a stalk of spring onion and Chinese celery and I am ready to make a hearty, wholesome, tasty beef and white radish soup.
To take away the gamey smell of the meat, I added 1 cinnamon stick, 2 tiny star anise and 3 cloves. Well, the numbers can be varied but for those who are new to cooking, it is easy to remember 1,2,3 rite? I also added half a bulb of garlic and a few slices of ginger.
As usual, if you are cooking soup, do not use too much water. It will watered down (doh..) the flavour. What I usually do is to measure the amount of water that I know we can consume and boil the soup on low heat or using pressure cooker or slow cooker (depending on my mood).
First I quick boil a bit of water and give the beef a quick blanch. It will remove some of the icky stuffs that make the soup murky. Then, only I put all the ingredients and slow boil till the beef is tender. It may take several hours so if you are cooking beef or mutton soup, plan at least 3 hours ahead.