Subgum Chicken Soup

This satisfying and hearty soup is almost certainly an ad hoc Westernized Chinese creation. Many of the ingredients are distinctly western, but with the addition of bok choy we transform the soup into a gem that can be found on many Chinese restaurant menus.


  • 225 g (8 oz) bok choy
  • 1 litre ( pints) Chinese Chicken Stock or store-bought fresh stock
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons seeded and chopped green pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chopped celery
  • 4 tablespoons peeled and chopped fresh or canned water chestnuts
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh mushrooms
  • 4 tablespoons chopped cooked chicken meat
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped spring onions, white part only
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped spring onion greens, to garnish


Prepare the bok choy: separate the leaves and stalks, and cut the leaves into 5 cm (2 in) pieces. Peel the stalks, cut them into diagonal slices and wash them well in several changes of water.

Put the chicken stock in a pot and bring it to a simmer.

Sprinkle the sugar into the simmering stock; taste and add salt, pepper and soy sauce; give it several good stirs. Next toss in the bok choy and the rest of the vegetables and cook for 5 minutes.

Remove the soup from the heat and toss in the cooked chicken and the white spring onions, stirring all the while. Finally, drizzle on the sesame oil and stir once. Garnish with the finely chopped spring onion greens and serve immediately.