White fungus or white wood ear fungus (白木耳) or snow fungus (雪耳) or silver ear fungus (银耳), whatever you called it is a species of fungus that grows on dead tree. This fungus is white with a gelatinous fruit bodies and said to have medicinal benefits. In Chinese cuisine, we mostly cook it in sweet soup or herbal savory soup. You can even stir-fry with it.
I wanted to make split mung bean soup because it was quick and easy as it cooked really fast without much prior soaking required. Then, I remembered I made a nagaimo mung bean soup before which made me think what else could I used instead of nagaimo that I had at home. Which came out to be white fungus. I thought the crunchy white fungus would go well with my mung bean soup and hence this soup was created. Got to say, it was good! What a great way to trick my girls into eating the white fungus.
Oh, I had lots of broken bits of white fungus in my packet and thus that was what I used for this soup. If your white fungus are in pieces, just take one and soften it in water and then cut it into smaller pieces.
6 oz/ 200g split mung beans, soak in water for 30 minutes, wash and rinse until water run clear
1 cup soaked and cleaned white wood fungus/ snow fungus bits
55 oz filtered water
Gula Melaka/ rock sugar to taste
Fat free condensed milk (optional)
1. In a large pot, add in the filtered water and bring it to boil.
2. When boiling, add the washed mung beans and snow fungus. Stir to mix. Turn the heat to low and let it simmer for 20-30 minutes. Need to keep watch as mung beans cooked really fast.
3. Season to taste with Gula Melaka (palm sugar) or rock sugar. Stir until sugar dissolved. [Note: if you plan to add a little condensed milk like me, don't make it too sweet]
4. I add about 1 tsp. of fat free condensed milk into the bowl before adding the hot sweet soup for a richer taste. Stir until condensed milk is dissolved before serving.