Herbal tonic soup for hubby

My hubby's been having backache for a few weeks now and so he's been visiting the chinese sinseh more often and eating the prescribed chinese medicine, either in powder form or herbs to be brewed (by me, of course). When he's not taking the chinese medicine, I'd brew this herbal tonic soup for him as the ingredients are supposed to help 补 and heal his backache problem.

I dunno what I should call the soup as I got this list of ingredients and the instructions from my mum who's been reading about herbal soups and my eldest aunt who's an expert on chinese herbs. Anyway, here's how to brew it:

Serves 1


  • 1.5L of water

  • du zhong (杜仲) (about palm size)

  • jin mao gou ji (金毛狗脊) (2pcs)

  • huai niu qi (淮牛膝) (3 pcs)
  • ba ji tian (巴戟天 ) (3 pcs)

  • black beans (a big handful)

  • dried red dates (紅棗) (6)

  • dried black dates (3)

  • a handful of wolfberries (枸杞子)

  • pork rib/loin (optional) - if cooking it as a soup, then add the pork rib/loin; otherwise if drinking it as a drink, you can omit this

  1. Rinse the ingredients.

  2. Put the pork into a small pot of water and wait for the water to boil. Once the water boils, you can remove the pork. This is to cleanse the pork of the bloody taste and the dirt.

  3. Fry the black beans with a pinch of salt till the beans are completely dry.

  4. Place all the ingredients into a pot of water (with the exception of the wolfberries) and put to boil on high heat.

  5. Once the soup boils, turn the fire down to low and simmer for 2hours.

  6. At the 1.5 hour mark, put the wolfberries in.

Suitable to be drunk every day if necessary.

I try to cook this either as a soup or drink for my hubby on alternate days whenever the backache is really bad. He always says that it makes him feel much better the next day!

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