Ham Broth with Sotanghon and Chicken Balls


When the weather is rainy and wet outside (particularly if it has been wet for several days in a row) and/or there is someone in the house down with a cold, we inevitably turn to a chicken soup or some variation of it to sooth the senses and drive away the germs… Here is a super simple recipe for soup2 a ham/chicken sotanghon soup that never fails to hit the spot… Start by making a ham broth, boiling a ham bone and maybe some onions and peppercorns in lots of water for about an hour. I stock ham bones in the freezer for this purpose. Buying ham bones is really quite cheap and the flavor extracted is terrific. Strain the solids out of the broth. Reduce broth further to an intense flavor. Add some reconstituted dried mushrooms into the ham broth, drop some chicken meat balls made out of ground chicken and some salt and pepper (or shredded boiled chicken instead). Add some greens such as bok choy or pechay and season with some ground white pepper. Some folks like to serve this with fried thinly sliced garlic and or onions. We serve big bowls of this and it’s the entire meal…


12 Responses

  1. Any of those vendors of ham like in groceries, malls, or even quiapo seem to sell the bones of the hams that they carve… they are very reasonably priced, sometimes less than PHP100 for a lot of bones!

  2. did you use shiitake or tengang daga (can’t tell from pic, sorry)? fall is coming soon, this would be perfect for those chilly days…thanks!

  3. Oh, MM! I’m so into soups these days! I’m such a suki of Pho Hoa — at least, I can make this at home! Yum! I’ll load up on the chicken balls and less of the noodles na lang — curbing carb these days… Thanks, thanks! :)

  4. Gigi, that’s what I thought, it’s a Vietnamese Noodle Soup! LOL. My mom’s version calls for patola and misua (sotanghon when misua is not available), ground pork or shredded cooked chicken. She just makes sure the misua were cut probably between 2-3 inches long, and in the absence of patola she uses petchay, sometimes shredded cabbage is substituted.
    Point is, you could pretty much do anything with noodle soups, well, except (for me) if you added tripe into it.
    I found some misua from a Filipino grocery here, bought it without having any idea what to do with it, I said the inspiration would come later on. Call this perfect timing or what. I even forgot about mom’s old recipe, until this post. Once again, thank you very much, MM. Time to tweak mom’s old recipe once again. ;)

  5. Called aternately almondegas or albondegas among families with more recent or lingering Spanish pretensions or otherwise plebeianized as just bola-bola, still one of my favourites having gotten over its perpetual weekly presence in the dining table of my university lodgings. The version I knew too well was of course not as spiffy as that of MM but like Connie’s mom’s, with patola and misua. We knew right away if the week’s bola-bola was prepared by the cook’s apprentice when there was no visible bola-bola at all but an indistinc labo-labo of a soup that looked like the sargasso sea in a bowl.

  6. this looks pretty easy to handle! thanks for the recipe MM! and I am now craving for it! have to buy some glass noodles now!

  7. Honey, I actually asked someone before I wrote this post to make sure chicken’s didn’t have balls… they don’t. Perhaps its along with the strangeness of hens laying eggs that aren’t fertilized…heehee.



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