I really like this soup because it contains seaweed which provides a distinctive flavour with its high mineral salt content and packs the soup with umami!
You can buy seaweed (laver) from Asian supermarkets. It's black with a purplish tint and dried into thick round sheets.
Pork Stock (makes about 1.5 litres stock)
• 1kg pork bones
• 3 litres water
• 3-4 slices ginger
• ¼ teaspoon (~10) whole black peppercorns
• 3 sprig spring onions
• 1 stick celery with leaves
• 1 carrot
• few stalks coriander
• light soy sauce (~2 teaspoons) and salt (~1 teaspoons) to taste
Put pork bones into a large pot with cold water and bring to boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes, and skim off the fat and froth/impurities that rises to the surface. Then add in the ginger, black peppercorns, spring onions, celery, carrots and coriander stalks. Simmer on low heat for 2 hours. Add soy sauce and salt to taste. Strain.
(Skimming off fat and impurities)
(After simmering for 2 hours)
• 300g mince pork
• ½ cup chestnuts, finely chopped
• 2 sprigs spring onion (only use the bottom third), finely chopped
• ½ teaspoon sesame oil
• 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon oyster sauce
• ½ tablespoon Shaoxing wine
• 1 ½ teaspoon cornflour
• 1 tablespoon water
• pinch of salt and white pepper
Mix all ingredients together until well combined. Refrigerate for one hour. Form into small round balls.
Other soup ingredients
• 10g dried black seaweed (laver), cut the required amount into smaller pieces, wash and drain thoroughly
• 2 blocks of soft tofu (~200g), cut into cubes
• salt, light soy sauce and sugar to taste
• spring onion and coriander for garnish
To make soup
Bring stock to boil and add in the pork balls one at a time making sure that they don't stick together. Cook the pork balls for 4-5 minutes, add tofu and cook for another minute. Then add in the seaweed and boil for 30 seconds. Season to taste with salt, light soy sauce and a little sugar. Serve and garnish with spring onions and coriander.