Homemade Chinese vegetable soup is low-fat and is rich in nutritious, high-fiber vegetables that make it a hearty choice for a healthy lunch or dinner. Chinese vegetable soup is especially beneficial if you're watching your weight. Make plenty of Chinese vegetable soup, as the flavors become even better with time.
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Place chicken or vegetable broth in a small saucepan. Use a low-sodium broth if you're limiting your sodium intake. Low-fat varieties are also available. You can also use homemade chicken stock. Bring the broth to a simmer, then keep it hot while you prepare the vegetables.
Heat sunflower oil or peanut oil in a soup kettle or large saucepan. Stir in sliced onion, chopped celery and shredded Chinese cabbage. According to Kurt Nolte, agriculture agent at University of Arizona's College of Agricultural and Life Science, Napa cabbage is a good addition to soup because the cabbage absorbs the flavors of the soup. Napa calcium is also high in potassium and calcium. Savoy cabbage, rich in beta-carotene, is a good alternative.
Stir in canned water chestnuts and fresh snow peas, or substitute frozen baby peas. Cook the mixture until the cabbage begins to soften. If desired, add fresh, sliced mushrooms.
Pour the hot broth into the soup mixture. Add soy sauce and rice vinegar. For a low-sodium diet, use low-salt soy sauce. Stir in salt and pepper to taste or use a low-sodium, Chinese seasoning blend.
Cover the pan and simmer the Chinese vegetable soup for 8 to 10 minutes, then add chopped, fresh parsley. Ladle the soup into four large soup bowls and serve.