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Home » 2-star, Difficulty, For Coughs and Colds, Pork, Savoury, Soups, Soups for Children

Pork Bones Chayote and Fresh Chinese Yam

Submitted by on February 10, 2009 – 3:46 pm7 Comments | 8,064 views

Soup Name: Pork Bones with Chayote and Fresh Chinese Yam 

Traditional Chinese Name: 合掌瓜湯 (hup jeung gwa tāng) 


This milky soup is excellent for children and relieving coughs and colds.  With its minimalistic ingredient list and sweet flavour, it is easy to make and digest and soothing to drink.  Use pork shank if you’d like a leaner soup.

What Ingredients are required?

1 pound of fresh pork bones
3-4 fresh chayotes
3 feet of fresh chinese yam
2 L of water
1 teaspoon of salt (to marinate the pork bones)

How do I prepare it?

  1. Begin boiling your soup water
  2. Blanch the pork in a separate pot of boiling water
  3. Wash chayotes and Chinese yam
  4. Using gloves, peel and chop the Chinese yam and chayotes
  5. Add all the ingredients to boiling water
  6. Boil for at least 2 hours

 Any benefits?

  • This neutral soup  is ideal for all drinkers (even children)
  • This soup is great in relieving symptoms for coughs and colds

Any precautions?

  • Fresh Chinese yam must be handled wearing gloves or else they make your hands itchy
  • Adding carrots or corn is not necessary to the soup


  • Favbabe says:

    Hi there,

    I am very happy to stumble upon your blog on soup. As my mom is also a cantonese, I grew up drinking soup. I am clueless about the benefit of the ingredients used for soups so, I was very happy to read about it on your blog :) Thanks for sharing these invaluable info!

    One question on this recipe. Can I substitute chinese yam with carrot or white raddish (daikon)? I’ve not seen chinese yam sold in any asian shops at where I stay.

    Keep posting delicious recipes on soup!

  • LadyTong says:

    Hi, You can definitely substitute Chinese Yam for carrots, this still keeps the soup neutral. You can also substitute Chinese Yam for White Radish, except White Radish is known to be a “cool” food, but still OK if you’re don’t mind. Actually, if you have dried Chinese Yam, you can also use that as well. Because this soup is really a select vegetable soup, you’re welcome to substitute a variety of neutral vegetables. I hope this answer helps and thank you for your continued support!


  • Pattani says:

    My mum was Hakka and we drank a lot of Chinese medicinal soups like your recipe, cool soups, warm soups for different seasons. Glad to have stumbled on your site – keep up the great work.
    Why do we need to peel the chayote? Is it ok to add tangerine rind to this soup? Many thanks. Pattani

  • LadyTong says:

    Hi Pattani, It’s actually OK to eat the Chayotes with the peel – but we recommend peeling it to avoid pesticides. Some people will tell you to keep the peel so that the chayote itself doesn’t disintegrate as quickly in the soup. This is completely up to you whether you peel it or not (similar to apples or pears in soups). It is completely OK to add tangerine rind. In general, most vegetable soups are compatible with tangerine rind. Hope this helps and thank you for the encouraging comments.

  • Rosalind says:

    Hi Lady,

    Can I boil the soup without chayote cos last minute cooking this soup. And can I also add 南北杏 in this soup, and what is the qty to put?

    Very happy to find your websites cos though far in France I get to enjoy good n nice soup with my friends in France who love chinese soups.

    Waiting your reply and thank you in advance.


  • LadyTong says:

    Dear Rosalind,
    You can definitely use other ingredients (ie: carrots, onions, corn) if Chayote isn’t readily available. Can also use the 南北杏 (put around 1 tablespoon worth). You can still make great Chinese soups with minimal ingredients in other countries. You just might not be able to find the herbs that easily, but meat and veggies, in great combination is a great start! Thanks for your continued support! Lisa

  • Christine says:

    Hi Lady

    If i would use dried Chinese Yam, how much should I use for the soup.
    I’m so lucky to find your website. It’s so details and easy to follow. Keep it up.

    Christine from Singapore

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