A few days ago when I went shopping at the Chinese grocery store, I found some goji leaves. I don’t remember seeing them here in the past. In fact, I haven’t seen this vegetable for a long, long time. All I remember was when I was a kid, my mom would make a soup with it, and I would absolutely hate it. The leaves have a certain bitterness and like bitter melon is something you have to develop a taste for.
I suppose it’s nostalgia that made me pick up a pack of goji leaves. We decide to make a soup with it. Usually it’s cooked with liver and goji berries, to make a soup super-packed with vitamin A.
It’s my first time preparing this vegetable myself, and I didn’t realize that there are thorns on the stems. At first we gingerly plucked the leaves one by one off the stems, until my husband remembered how his grandma used to just run her fingers down the stem and the leaves will come off easily. Hence preparation became much faster.
The leaves are supposed to be added to the soup at the last minute, as they are tender and wilt easily. This type of soup is called “Gwan Tong” quick boil soup, in contrast to the other type that cooks for hours at lower heat “Bo Tong”. Unfortunately my husband didn’t remember that part of his grandma’s cooking and I was busy preparing other dishes. Therefore when I turned around, the leaves had turned yellow already. It’s still delicious enough and next time hopefully we’ll be more successful. The leaves can also be stir-fried as well. From what I found online, the leaves are as much as nutrient superstar as the berries, and are a rich source of lutein, lycophene and other antixidants.