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Vietnamese Meatball and Watercress Soup (Canh)
Watercress adds a peppery note to the soup; look for “live” watercress, which is packaged with its roots attached. It stays fresher longer and is easier to clean. To prep it, trim off and discard the roots, rinse and drain the greens, then cut them into 1½-inch lengths, discarding any stems that are thick or tough. If you prefer, substitute an equal amount of baby spinach for the watercress, but roughly chop the leaves before using. We also liked this soup made with chicken bouillon paste instead of chicken broth; use 2 tablespoons of paste dissolved in 2 quarts of water.
pound ground pork
scallions, white parts finely chopped, green parts thinly sliced
01Line a rimmed baking sheet with kitchen parchment and mist with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, combine the pork, scallion whites, egg white, 1 tablespoon of the fish sauce, 2 teaspoons of the ginger, ¾ teaspoons kosher salt and 1 teaspoon white pepper. Mix with your hands. Lightly moisten your hands with water and form into 20 balls, each about a generous tablespoon, and set on the prepared baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate.
I made the canh. It is good stuff! I will make it again. I picked up three bunches of watercress (@$1.29 each) just to be safe and have enough. I used two of them in the soup. I also got two lbs of ground pork.
I followed the directions in the recipe, more or less. I made the meatballs with exactly one lb (454 g) of the ground pork, and overall I used a bit more ginger than the recipe called for though not a lot. Seven scallions instead of six, seven garlic cloves instead of four, and so on.
Here are my calculations:
Vietnamese Chicken Watercress soup (Canh) 11/21/2020
Cals/g Ingredient used weight used g weight oz cals used
0.80 ginger 8 0.3 6.4
8.57 grapeseed oil 25 0.9 214.3
0.40 Onion 197 6.9 78.8
1.50 garlic 27 0.9 40.5
3.33 scallion greens 30 1.1 99.9
0.11 Watercress 243 8.5 26.4
0.02 chicken stock 1753 61.5 35.1
0.35 fish sauce 38 1.3 13.3
0.24 lime juice 32 1.1 7.7
2.63 ground pork 454 15.9 1193.3
0.52 egg white 36 1.3 18.7
0.38 scallion whites 54 1.9 20.5
0.80 ginger 17 0.6 13.6
0.35 fish sauce 17 0.6 6.0
0.00 salt 10 0.4 0.0
2.52 pepper 2 0.1 5.0
Ingredient weight 2914 102.2 1768.5 Total calories
final wt (H2O loss) 2506 87.9 0.71 calories/gram
All in all, this tasty soup is low calorie. I have enjoyed it as is, and with cooked rice added. One could substitute prepared frozen meatballs for the homemade and this soup would be even quicker indeed to make. A Vietnamese friend makes this with tofu vs meatballs. Maybe I will try it with tofu and using Tone's Chicken or Minor's Chicken base + water to make the stock.
Good job Maynard!!! Just happened to have everything on hand... Love