An easy recipe to prepare Chinese longan and snow fungus sweet soup (Cheng Teng), with jujube/red dates and lotus seeds. Vegan, gluten-free, and sugar-free.
Longan and snow fungus sweet soup is a very basic but very delicious Chinese sweet soup. This sweet soup can be served hot when the weather is biting cold, and it is also amazingly refreshing served chilled during hot summer days.
Cheng Teng (清汤) is what we call this soup in Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia. My version is very simple with minimal ingredients, but you can always add more Chinese herbs to make this into a deluxe version.
Incidentally, this dessert soup is vegan friendly, and gluten-free. Also, all the dried fruits used in the soup lend enough sweetness, and most of the time I don’t even add any more sugar to this soup, talk about healthy!
What you need to prepare longan and snow fungus sweet soup
Here are what I use to prepare a batch of longan and snow fungus sweet soup:
- 1 dried snow fungus (白木耳 - bai mu er)
- 80-100 gram dried longan (桂圆肉 - gui yuan rou), using more means sweeter soup
- 8-12 dried red dates (红枣 - hong zao), I tend to use 12 since more red dates means sweeter soup
- 25 gram dried lotus seeds (莲子 - lian zi), this is totally optional, but I love a bit of contrast in texture the lotus seeds provide against all the other ingredients
What if I want a sweeter soup
I treat this sweet soup as healthy dessert, and as such, I try to steer clear from adding unnecessary ingredients, even sugar. But if you find the soup lacks sweetness, you can try adding rock sugar or palm sugar.
A better alternative though, is to add even more ingredients to the soup which add natural sweetness, such as peach gum, monk fruit/luo han guo, candied winter melon, and dried persimmon. If you choose this alternative, simply add them with the rest of the ingredients when boiling the soup.
Optional add-on ingredients for a deluxe version of Cheng Teng
There are other ingredients you can add to make your Cheng Teng more complete. Some popular choices include:
- job’s tears/pearl barley (薏米 - yi mi)
- malva nuts (胖⼤海 - pang da hai)
- ginkgo nuts (白果 - bai guo)
- sago/tapioca pearls
- pandan leaves
How to prepare Chinese longan and snow fungus dessert soup.
Cut off small pieces from the snow fungus with a scissor. Discard the yellow tough center.
Place the snow fungus, longan, lotus seeds, jujube fruits, and water in a soup pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the snow fungus is soft, about 1 1⁄2 hour to 2 hours.
Test for the level of sweetness and only add rock sugar/palm sugar if needed. Stir until the sugar is fully dissolved.
Turn off heat. Serve warm or chilled.
Cheng Teng - Longan and Snow Fungus Sweet Soup
- 1 dried snow fungus, soaked overnight until soft and puffed up
- 80-100 gram dried longan, soaked overnight
- 8-12 dried jujube fruits/red dates, soaked overnight
- 25 gram dried lotus seeds, soaked overnight
- 6 cups water
- rock sugar or palm sugar, to taste (optional)
- Cut off small pieces from the snow fungus with a scissor. Discard the yellow tough center.
- Place the snow fungus, longan, lotus seeds, jujube fruits, and water in a soup pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the snow fungus is soft, about 1 1/2 hour to 2 hours.
- Test for the level of sweetness and only add rock sugar/palm sugar if needed. Stir until the sugar is fully dissolved.
- Turn off heat. Serve warm or chilled.