Hanoi ball soup cooked in the old way


A bowl of soup that harmonizes color and flavor with soft skin, sweet broth, crunchy vegetables, and fresh colors is like a spring painting. This is one of the four main dishes of the Tet feast of ancient Hanoi people.


( twelfth )

  • 100 gr tenderloin balls
  • 150 gr lean tenderloin meat
  • 30 grams of dried shrimp
  • 30 grams of peas
  • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 kohlrabi tuber
  • 1/2 carrot
  • 1/2 cauliflower
  • 1/2 broccoli
  • Chicken broth
  • Spices: Fish sauce, salt, MSG, white wine, ginger
  • Coriander


  1. Choose and soak the balls: Choose a rectangular shaped tenderloin skin with a thick body and a bright yellow color. This is a delicious ball that absorbs the spices when cooked. When you buy the bulbs, soak them in sticky rice water for 1 – 1.5 hours to help them bloom to an ivory white. 
  2. Remove the ball : Then, cut the ball into bite-sized pieces. Spread evenly, add 1.5 cups of white wine, add crushed ginger branches, squeeze and soak to effectively deodorize. Rinse with clean water and squeeze gently. Careful preparation helps make the soup elegant and flavorful. 
  3. Soak dried shrimp in warm water until hatched. Thinly sliced ​​tenderloin to taste. 
  4. Prepare the pickled leg (an ingredient for cooking soup): This part is meticulously cut and trimmed by the woman. Carrots trimmed into lovely peach and lotus flower shapes. Kohlrabi is trimmed into leaf shapes or jagged rectangles. Cut cauliflower and broccoli into bite-sized pieces. Peas remove the stem. Soak shiitake mushrooms, wash and cut the legs. Wash everything and drain. 
  5. Cooking chicken broth: Ancient Hanoi people were quite meticulous when simmering chicken bone broth: Clean the chicken bones, add grilled onions and ginger, cook over low heat, and open the lid so that the broth is clear and not cloudy. During cooking, remove foam if any. When the broth reaches its taste, skim off the top layer of fat and use it to stir-fry or cook dried bamboo shoot soup. Filter the sweet and clear broth to cook shiny soup. 
  6. Simmering dried shrimp, cooking tenderloin: Simmer dried shrimp with a bowl of water over low heat for 15 – 20 minutes to release the sweetness. The tenderloin is also simmered similarly, making a clear broth. Take the dried shrimp and tenderloin out and set aside. Mix chicken broth with dried shrimp broth and tenderloin broth and season to taste. 
  7. Presentation: Add kohlrabi, carrots, cauliflower, peas and soaked shiitake mushrooms into the broth. When the water boils again, take out the ripe fruits and vegetables and soak them in a bowl of cool water to keep their color fresh and crispy. Continue adding the taro balls, when the water boils again, take it out and set aside. Be careful not to cook the balls thoroughly for too long or they will lose their delicious taste. Use a bowl to extract the love (small lower body, flared mouth) and then arrange the balls alternately between the eraser legs so that the colors are harmonious. In the middle, arrange the tenderloin and dried shrimp and arrange it on the tray. When you’re ready to eat, reheat the broth, add the soup, sprinkle some coriander leaves, pepper and enjoy. 
  8. Finished product requirements: Soft skin, naturally sweet broth, delicious crunchy vegetables. The color of the soup bowl is in harmony with the soft green from the cauliflower, the bright orange from the carrots and tender shrimp, the pink and white from the tenderloin, the golden brown from the shiitake mushrooms… like an eye-catching, flavorful spring painting.


  • Shadow soup is one of the four main dishes in Tet and wedding feasts of Hanoi people in particular and the North in general, along with bowls of stewed bamboo shoots, fried squid, mushrooms with pork sausage, birds stewed with lotus seeds…
  • It is necessary to thoroughly remove the shine for the new bowl of soup to be delicious and elegant. The shading of the skin is a lie, making the bowl of soup smell fishy and have a poor taste.
  • Ancient Hanoi ball soup required the broth to be light and sweet , so the chicken broth needed to be skimmed of fat, then mixed with the water to simmer dried shrimp and the water to simmer the tenderloin. After bleaching, the ball is marinated in a little water to flavor it (do not stir-fry the ball to make it mushy).
  • Nowadays, in weddings, soup soup has variations such as adding heart and liver, oval, quail eggs, fried soft balls…  easily destroying the original elegance, making it difficult to suit the taste of gourmets and discerning gourmets. .

 ( According to vnexpress )
($1~24,000 VND)