Vietnamese Recipes & Cuisines (Soups)

Winter Melon Soup with Tiger Lilies Recipe

This simple soup uses two traditional South East Asian ingredients - winter melon to absorb the flavors and tiger lilies to lift the broth with a floral scent. Both are available in Asian markets, but when choosing tiger lilies, make sure they are light golden in color - sometimes they are referred to as golden needles. If you can't find winter melon, you could make the soup using another winter squash.

Ingredients : Serves 4

350 g

25 g

1/4 teaspoon

1/4 teaspoon

1 small bunch

1 small bunch


For Stock

25 g

500 g


175 g

15 ml

15 ml


Winter melon

Tiger lilies, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes

Salt, or to taste

Ground black pepper, or to taste

Coriander (cilantro) leaves, stalks removed, leaves chopped, to serve

Mint leaves, stalks removed, leaves chopped, to serve



Dried shrimp, soaked in water for 15 minutes

Pork ribs

Onion, peeled and quartered

Carrots, peeled and cut into chunks

Nuoc Cham

Soy sauce

Black peppercorn

Method :
  • To make the stock, drain and rinse the dried shrimp.

  • Put the pork ribs in a large pan and cover with 2 liters water, Bring the water to the boil.

  • Skim off any fat, and add the dried shrimp and the remaining stock ingredients. Cover and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, then skim off any foam or fat.

  • Continue simmering, uncovered, for a further 30 minutes. Strain and check the seasoning. You should have about 1.5 liters stock.

  • Halve the winter melon lengthways and remove the seeds and inner membrane.

  • Finely slice the flesh into half-moons. Squeeze the soaked tiger lilies dry and tie them in a knot.

  • Bring the stock to the boil in a deep pan or wok. Reduce the heat and add the winter melon and tiger lilies. Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the winter melon is tender. Season to taste, scatter the coriander and mint over the top, and serve immediately.

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