Hazardous haze, caused by open burning at plantations in Sumatra, Indonesia, has been enveloping Singapore, parts of West Malaysia and some Indonesian cities recently. For some parts of Malaysia, the pollution index hit a record high and emergency had to be declared, forcing schools to close and people to stay indoors. As the smog headed north reaching Kuala Lumpur late last week, it’s now our turn to suffer the impact of the haze. This leaves us no choice but to close all the windows, stay indoors waiting eagerly for the haze to clear. Yesterday evening, it rained for a short while but we could immediately feel a huge improvement in the air quality. This morning, I can at least see a clearer Kuala Lumpur skyline view from my balcony. When will this haze be over? Let’s pray for the best.
Despite the haze, I still make soup regularly for my family. It’s, in fact, an easy way to get my soup-loving family to have more fluid intake during this dry season. To me, making soup is much simpler than cooking a dish. Imagine you just have to prepare all the ingredients and throw them into a pot filled with water and let it boil. Doesn’t this sound hassle-free?
For some clear Asian-inspired soups, you only drink the liquid and discard the ingredients. As for this nourishing pumpkin chicken soup that I am sharing here, you can consume every bit of it! I regard it as a “one-pot” meal. Apart from its delicious taste, this soup contains nutritious ingredients such as chicken, pumpkin, dried oysters and dried bean curd skins that you can eat too, hence reaping the full benefits of this soup and keeping wastage to the minimum. What could be better than that?
In this recipe, I cook the pumpkin with its skin as I just learn that pumpkin skin is edible and contains beneficial anti-fungal properties. The cooked pumpkin skin is soft and tasteless. Even my picky hubby and son don’t mind eating it.
The dried oysters, though optional, play an important role to mask off a bit the natural sweetness of the pumpkin. Thus, the soup will give a more palatable taste to those who are picky with pumpkin.
If you add some cooked noodles (such as vermicelli, mee sua or somen) and greens to this soup, it will turn into a simple, light and quick meal! Drinking soup will no longer be boring anymore!
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