Winter Melon Soup (Canh Bi Dao)

I'm super excited to receive some home grown winter melon from a relative's organic garden. I got half of the melon but this thing was gigantic. I got more than I needed but no food goes to waste at my house, so I'm determined to make a soup using some chicken I have on hand and gift a couple of containers afterwards. You'll find that the melon will give the soup a fresh and clean taste, so in using the chicken, the broth is sure to be clear and savory. Enjoy!

Winter Melon Soup
winter melon
winter melon for soup
marinaded chicken for soup
winter melon soup

RECIPE for 8 servings

3 lbs of winter melon, cut into 2-inch cubes
1/2 gallon of water
1 tbs salt
4 tbs of fish sauce or to taste
1 large handful of cilantro leaves (save the stem to marinade with the chicken, as indicated below)

Marinade for Chicken 
1.5 lb of chicken breast, roughly chopped to resemble coarse ground chicken
1 handful of cilantro stem, chopped finely
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
4 tbs of fish sauce
1 tsp sugar

Mix all the above ingredients in a bowl and let the chicken marinade for 15-20 mins.


In a large stock pot, add the water and bring to a boil.
Using a soup spoon, add the chopped chicken to pot. Then add in the melon.
Lower heat from high to medium and continue cooking.
Add salt and fish sauce to taste. 
Let the soup cook until the melon is no longer opaque, approximately 15 mins.
Add the cilantro leaves at the very end, after the heat is turned off.
Serve with white rice.