Sharksfin MELON Soup

It’s a MELON!

Not real sharksfin, so don’t call up the animal rights group! But to be honest, Sharksfin Soup, the indispensible dish at many Chinese Wedding Dinners, is delicious. And I still eat it once in a blue moon when I get invited to wedding dinners and during festive occations (okay, you can stone me now, and circulate the following advert)

I know, it’s horrible. And has a similar effect as having gross pictures printed on cigarette packets- people still remain addicted. I’m not a sharksfin addict, and I’m not here to judge them, but to suggest a healthier and more refreshing alternative to the starchy sharksfin soup! This is the starchy, slightly expensive version that we shouldn’t want.

This is the starchy, super expensive version that we should abhor. You can see why. Whole fin per person! No wonder the activists are raging mad!

(I’ve never eaten this version before, by the way. It’s beyond the financial means of the common man. Hehe…)

But THIS, this is the peculiar melon that I would like to introduce to you today! Say ‘Hi’ to Mr Wholesome-goody-two-shoes!

Sorry, not you, Tikki.

If you look carefully, you can see droplets on the melon. It’s not condensed, water vapor but clear sap bleeding from the just-cut fruit. You need to de-seed the melon before making the soup. Usually, I slice away the skin and cut the melon into large chunks.

Then I boil it to soften and loosen the flesh.

When it’s cooled, the seeds can be easily removed. There!

Isn’t it starting to look like real sharksfin?

The rest of the melon will also become thread-like with more boiling. It’s really quite a curious fruit.

Here’s the recipe:
1/4 sharksfin melon (prepared as above)
Chicken broth (simply boil one chicken to attain a clear stock. You can leave the chicken in the soup, or if you prefer a little variety, use it to make Hainanese Chicken Rice)
Two corn on cobs, cut into large chunks
1 carrot, peeled and cut into chunks
Pork bones, optional (blanched to remove scum)
Dried scallop/ oyster
2 honeyed dates
8 red dates
2 tbsp barley
1 tsp bitter almond
1 tsp wolfberries

There’s my pretty chicken, sitting all dainty n cross-legged.

1) Wash all ingredients and boil them in the chicken broth for 3-4 hours.

Because I don’t like a strong taste of corn in my soup and I prefer the Sharksfin Melon to still have some bite to it, I only add the corn and melon 1 hour before serving.
2) Add salt to taste. Enjoy!

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