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Winter Melon Soup

Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored yet warm, comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until tender. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty. Winter Melon Soup is very simple to prepare and is perfect to accompany a weekday dinner.

 

Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored and comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until soft. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty. Winter Melon Soup is very simple to prepare and is perfect to accompany a weekday dinner.I love trying new ingredients such as this Winter Melon, so I was thrilled when my next-door neighbor Lou gave us a large winter melon. He explained that it is usually made into a soup with meatballs and gave us a recipe to try. I felt like I had been given a prize from his Florida garden, which he prides in being completely organic.

Did you know? Winter melons are grown in warm regions, specifically Asia and South Florida, and is a variety of the musk melons. It is considered one of the larger fruit species, the winter melon is about a foot long, and can weigh up to 40 pounds, and has a dark green appearance.

 

 

Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored yet warm, comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until tender. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty. Winter Melon Soup is very simple to prepare and is perfect to accompany a weekday dinner.

 

Frequently asked questions

  1. Is this recipe an authentic winter melon soup recipe? While it is close to being one, I would have to say no do to adding rice wine instead of Shaoxing wine, kale, and flat-leaf parsley. A more authentic version would be omitting those ingredients and using Shaoxing wine instead of the rice wine and chopped cilantro instead of the flat-leaf parsley.
  2. Where can I purchase a Winter Melon? You can usually find a winter melon at most International or Asian Markets in the United States. They may be sold whole or cut in the markets. 
  3. What is Shaoxing Wine? Shaoxing rice wine is another type of fermented rice wine. It originates from Shaoxing, the Zhejiang province. Shaoxing rice wine is brownish, and the flavor is stronger but sweeter than a rice wine.
  4. How long will winter melon keep for if appropriately stored? Unwashed whole winter melon can be stored in a dry, dark, cool area for 3-4 months. Once the winter melon has been sliced, you will need to wrap in a plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator, where it may last up to a week.
  5. What does a Winter melon look like? Winter melon can grow to more than a foot long and weigh approximately 35-40 pounds when fully grown. It looks similar to large watermelon with its shape and dark green, waxy-looking skin. The flesh of the winter melon and seeds are white, is very mild in taste, and it should not be eaten raw.
  6. What are the health benefits of winter melon? The Winter melon is often praised for its fiber content, diuretic, and possible aphrodisiac properties. Winter melon has also been thought to provide health benefits such as increased energy and a sharper mind to smoother digestion and a lower risk of disease. Winter melon is loaded with nutrition. It contains Vitamin B1, Vitamin B3, and Vitamin C. Winter melon also possesses various minerals such as calcium, sodium, zinc, iron, phosphorus, manganese, copper, magnesium, selenium, and potassium. Due to its high content in potassium, it can help to maintain blood pressure levels.

 

 

 

Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored yet warm, comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until tender. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty. Winter Melon Soup is very simple to prepare and is perfect to accompany a weekday dinner

 

 

 

Ingredients for Soup

  • Eight ounces of lean ground pork
  • Two teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
  • One tablespoon rice wine or Shaoxing wine
  • One tablespoon soy sauce
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • One egg white
  • Three teaspoons cornstarch
  • Five cups chicken broth
  • One pound four ounces winter melon
  • Three cups fresh Kale, chopped *Optional*
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped *Optional*
  • Chopped Spring onions to garnish *Optional*

 

 

 

 

 

 

Method used

  1. Combine the ground pork, freshly grated ginger, rice wine, soy sauce,  Kosher salt, white pepper, and the egg white in a bowl, combine well. Add the cornstarch to the mixture and blend in until it becomes a pasty texture.
  2. Prepare the winter melon by using a sharp kitchen knife to slice the winter melons rind off. Throw away the green peel.  Next, remove the soft inner part and throw it away. Then turn the winter melon skin side down, and cut to make even thick cubes or even slices if preferred.
  3. Add the chicken broth to a large pot and bring to a good simmer. Turn the heat to low-medium heat. Use a small scooper to scoop the ground pork mixture and shape it into a little ball, then add it to the broth one by one. Make the small meatballs one at a time. After the last meatball is added simmer about 2-3 minutes, and stir the soup a few times careful not to damage the small meatballs. 
  4. Add the winter melon to the pot. Bring the soup to a full rolling boil. Turn the heat back down to medium heat and simmer until the winter melon is almost cooked through * approximately 5 to 6 minutes*  At this time, test a piece of the winter melon; if the texture has turned slightly soft, it is done.
  5. At this time, add the optional chopped kale and fresh parsley, remove from the heat source, and let sit for about five minutes before serving. Serve while hot.

 

 

 

5 from 8 votes
Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored yet warm, comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until tender. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty. Winter Melon Soup is very simple to prepare and is perfect to accompany a weekday dinner
Winter Melon Soup
Prep Time
25 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Cool
5 mins
Total Time
50 mins
 

Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored yet warm, comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until tender. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty.

Course: Soup
Cuisine: American, Chinese
Keyword: Winter Melon Soup, Winter Melon Soup with Meatballs
Servings: 6 Servings
Calories: 159 kcal
Author: hmccallum
Ingredients
  • 8- ounces ground pork
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine Shaoxing Wine
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ¾ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 egg white
  • 3 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 5 cups chicken broth low sodium
  • 20 ounces winter melon cubed
  • 3 cups fresh Kale chopped *optional to use*
  • cup fresh parsley chopped *optional to use*
  • ¼ cup spring onions sliced *optional to use for garnish*
Instructions
  1. Combine the ground pork, freshly grated ginger, rice wine, soy sauce,  Kosher salt, white pepper, and the egg white in a bowl, combine well. Add the cornstarch to the mixture and blend in until it becomes a pasty texture.

  2. Prepare the winter melon by using a sharp kitchen knife to slice the winter melons rind off. Throw away the green peel.  Next, remove the soft inner part and throw it away. Then turn the winter melon skin side down, and cut to make even thick cubes or even slices if preferred.

  3. Add the chicken broth to a large pot and bring to a good simmer. Turn the heat to low-medium heat. Use a small scooper to scoop the ground pork mixture and shape it into a little ball, then add it to the broth one by one. Make the small meatballs one at a time. After the last meatball is added simmer about 2-3 minutes, and stir the soup a few times careful not to damage the small meatballs. 

  4. Add the winter melon to the pot. Bring the soup to a full rolling boil. Turn the heat back down to medium heat and simmer until the winter melon is almost cooked through *approximately 5 to 6 minutes*  At this time, test a piece of the winter melon; if the texture has turned slightly soft, it is done.

  5. At this time, add the optional chopped kale and fresh parsley, remove from the heat source, and let sit for about five minutes before serving. Serve while hot.

 

 

Winter melon soup is a delicately flavored yet warm, comforting dish that is usually served on cooler days. The winter melon is cooked in a rich-tasting chicken broth until tender. The addition of tiny tender homemade pork meatballs and fresh organic kale makes this simple soup taste delicious and hearty. Winter Melon Soup is very simple to prepare and is perfect to accompany a weekday dinner.

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18 Comments

  • Reply
    Erin
    August 16, 2020 at 3:38 pm

    I’d never heard of winter melon before trying your recipe. I’ll have to look for them again the next time I’m at an Asian food market. A great recipe that I will be saving.

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 27, 2020 at 2:57 pm

      Thank you so much, Erin for sharing your feedback! Have a great day!

  • Reply
    Moop Brown
    August 16, 2020 at 3:21 pm

    I’ve never had winter melon before today but it was such a unique addition to this recipe! Saving it to make again.

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 27, 2020 at 2:57 pm

      Thank you, Moop! Have agreat day!

  • Reply
    Veronika
    August 14, 2020 at 4:22 pm

    Wow! I’ve never tried winter melon before, but this soup looks absolutely delicious! Need to find winter melon at my local store and make this recipe!

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 27, 2020 at 2:58 pm

      Hey there Veronica! I hope you enjoy the recipe!

  • Reply
    Tammy
    August 14, 2020 at 3:10 pm

    I’ve never had winter melon before but it sounds like such an exciting and unique ingredient. I love the sound of this soup…it looks so comforting. I would love to give it a try sometime if I am able to locate winter melon. How much do you use in the recipe? 🙂 Thank you for sharing this wonderful dish with us!

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      September 15, 2020 at 8:49 am

      Thank you for asking—they (winter melons) are very large. I use about a pound and a half. You can use more if desired. I was gifted my winter melon by my neighbor–however I have seen it in Asian markets cut in smaller sizes. Good luck! I bet you’re going to love this recipe!

  • Reply
    Kathryn Donangelo
    August 12, 2020 at 11:17 am

    I’m so glad I gave this soup a try! The melon really compliments the other flavors and it’s just perfect! Thank you!

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      September 15, 2020 at 8:50 am

      Thank you, so much Kathryn— we really enjoyed it as well. It’s a new favorite of mine.

  • Reply
    Eva
    August 12, 2020 at 4:50 am

    I had never ever heard of winter melon before making this recipe, and I would have never thought to use it to make a soup with meatballs! I’m grateful to you for exposing me to a recipe – and an ingredient – I knew nothing about! I really enjoyed making something different for my family.

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 13, 2020 at 10:30 am

      Hey there Eva and thank you so much for stopping by. I appreciate your feedback! Have a great day.

  • Reply
    Ali
    August 11, 2020 at 1:46 pm

    Oh wow!! I had never heard of this soup before making your recipe this week. We have an Asian market next door, and I went to see if they had some winter melon and found it!!! Thanks for the inspiration my family enjoyed trying a new recipe!

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 13, 2020 at 10:29 am

      Thank you, Ali. You are so welcome! Glad you enjoyed the winter melon soup.

  • Reply
    Amanda
    August 10, 2020 at 5:54 pm

    This winter, melon soup is one flavorful tasting soup! The broth was so delicious, and I loved those tender pork meatballs — They made this soup extra special tasting. Saving the recipe

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 13, 2020 at 10:28 am

      Thank you, so much Amanda!I really appreciate the awesome feedback on this soup recipe!

  • Reply
    Shelley
    August 10, 2020 at 2:09 pm

    Heidy, you kind of just blew my mind! I’ve never seen a recipe like this before, and I’m so, so intrigued! I learned a lot – both about winter melon (it can grow up to 40 pounds?!?!?), as well as how to make this soup (like subbing Shaoxing wine and cilantro for a version that’s closer to being more authentic – great to know about those options). Now, if only my neighbor would show up with a gift of winter melon for me lol 😉

    • Reply
      hmccallum
      August 13, 2020 at 10:27 am

      Thank you so much! You will never believe this but my neighbor just gave my husband another winter melon! I am going to have to do another recipe soon. Thank goodness they have long storage times.

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