Chinese Clam Soup

Clams (and seafood in general) are cheap, fresh and in abundance here in Taipei. This Chinese clam soup (蛤蜊湯) with ginger is a warming soup suitable for the cool rainy days in Taipei now, yet it is also very refreshing and light-tasting for hotter season.

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Loofah Clam Soup Recipe
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This soup is fast to make with only a few ingredients, which is just the right dish for me to cook since my kitchen in Taipei is limited. Even though the soup looks clear and light-bodied, the umami depth from the clams is rich. It is also a very buildable recipe: I love to add squash or melon chunks to my bowl of clam soup.

Chinese Clam Soup Recipe

Fresh Taiwanese Clams
These are the clams I used for this recipe, after they are cleaned and de-gritted. Soak fresh clams in a bowl of salted water for 1-2 hours, until the sand & grit are purged out. Discard the water, rinse the clams and they are ready to use.

Taiwanese Clams Soup Recipe

You can replace the chicken stock with water and season the clams soup with salt, to taste.

Buy fresh clams and use them as soon as possible for best results.


  • 300g fresh local clams (such as “lala”, manilla or asari clams)
  • 1 level tsp fine sea salt for cleaning the clams
  • light chicken stock combine 200ml chicken stock with 300ml water
  • 10g ginger sliced thinly
  • 2 tbsp rice wine (or substitute with sake)
  • 3 thin slices ginger julienned; to garnish
  • chopped spring onion to garnish


  1. Clean and de-grit the clams. Scrub the clams with a hard-bristle brush. Put clams in a bowl of water with 1 tsp sea salt. Let the clams soak in the salted water for 1-2 hours, allowing the sand and grit to be purged out. Discard the water and rinse the clams. Set aside.
  2. Make the clam soup. In a soup pot, bring chicken stock to boil. Add cleaned clams and ginger slices. Simmer for 2-4 minutes, until the clams are opened. Add rice wine and simmer for another 15 seconds. Discard any clams still closed after cooking.  Ladle clams and soup to serving bowls. Garnish with julienned ginger and chopped spring onions.