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Spare-rib and white gourd soup (小排冬瓜汤)

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Spare-rib and white gourd soup is a common Shanghainese dish, popular all over the country with the locals and tourists as well. The combination of various types of ingredients makes the soup unique and typical for this territory, as it has amongst the main components: ribs and white gourd. Other ingredients used to cook this food are: monosodium glutamate, salt, ginger, onion, wine and sesame oil. Preparation is very quick and simple, as the pork ribs are cut into pieces, washed under cold water and boiled in a pan for some time until all the blood comes out. The meat is then removed from the pan, rinsed in clean cold water again, and put in another pan together with white gourd pieces and the remaining ingredients. The mixture is covered with water, a little bit of cooking wine, and simmered over a small fire for at least 40 minutes. The soup tastes even more delicious, if seasoned with some dates. When ready, the soup is served immediately, sprinkled with fresh chopped parsley and accompanied by any local side dishes or bread.

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