Arnold’s dried scallop soup

I made this soup it is from a recipe  of my brother-in-law Arnold who was chef at many leading Chinese restaurants in Brisbane. It takes a long time to make but it is worth the effort.

NB If the soup gets too thick during the cooking process add more water.  See the instructions at the bottom before starting to cook.

Basic ingredients
One Bacon Hock
2 litres of water
1 litre chicken stock
One and a half cups of long grain rice well washed
At least  6 dried scallops I used 15  but I like scallops
6 dried Shitake mushrooms
Pork balls


1 Place Bacon Hock and water in a 6 litre cooking pot, bring to the boil and simmer until the meat falls from the bone at least one hour.
2 Pick out bones, fat and skin leaving only the lean meat. Add chicken stock and bring to the boil.|
3 Add rice mushrooms, scallops and scallop water. Keep stirring.
4 When simmering start adding pork balls. Keep stirring.
5 Keep stirring to prevent rice sticking to the bottom of saucepan.
6 Simmer gently for at least an hour stirring often.

It is quite a thick soup probably best in the cooler months of the year. But I made mine in January .

Scallops: Cover the dried scallops with very hot water and soak until soft (about and hour).  Remove scallops and shred with fingers and set aside. Retain the scallop water.

You will have to go to China town to get the dried scallops. There are two main sorts small and larger the small ones are much cheaper. I used the small ones.

Mushrooms: Cover the dried shitake mushrooms with very hot water and soak until soft (about and hour).  . Remove stems and slice mushrooms finely. Discard mushroom water.

I bought some sliced dried shitake mushrooms from Coles.

Pork Balls: 200 grams of minced pork, one egg and corn flour to bind add a desert spoon of light soy sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Combine all the ingredients by  hand ( Use disposable rubber gloves) Form into bite size balls and drop into simmering soup.

Serve with finely sliced green shallots on top of soup.