Tong sui

Tong sui
Type Soup or custard
Course Dessert
Place of origin China
Cookbook: Tong sui  Media: Tong sui
Tong sui
Chinese 糖水
Literal meaning sugar water
Tian tang
Chinese 甜湯
Literal meaning sweet soup

Tong sui literally translated as "sugar water", also known as tim tong, is a collective term for any sweet, warm soup or custard served as a dessert at the end of a meal in Cantonese cuisine.[1] Tong sui are a Cantonese specialty and are rarely found in other regional cuisines of China. Outside of Cantonese-speaking communities, soupy desserts generally are not recognized as a distinct category, and the term tong sui is not used.

In Hong Kong and Malaysia, there is a huge variety of tong sui, so huge to an extent that have led to stores specialised in selling these desserts. These dessert stalls have also gained prominence in overseas Chinese communities, and are found in various parts of Canada, Australia and the United States.

Common varieties

English name Chinese name Description
Black sesame soup芝麻糊; zhīma húGround black sesame seeds are traditionally cooked with water and rock sugar. Chinese herbs are sometimes added to enhance the flavour and aroma. The instant black sesame powder sold in Asian supermarkets is usually sweetened. It requires the addition of hot water and mixing in the serving bowl, after which it should be left for 15 minutes before serving.
Doufuhua豆花; dòuhuā or 豆腐花; dòufu huāTofu pudding, with sweet syrup served in a separate bowl
Egg tong sui鸡蛋糖水; 雞蛋糖水; jīdàn tángshuǐpopular in Hong Kong and southern China
Got fan soup葛粉汤; 葛粉湯; géfěn tāngkudzu soup
Guilinggao龟苓膏; 龜苓膏; guīlíng gāomade from three-lined box turtle
Hasma雪蛤; xuěháA dessert made of dried fallopian tubes of the frog with supposed health benefits.
Red bean soup,
Red bean paste
红豆汤; 紅豆湯; hóngdòu tāng or 红豆沙; 紅豆沙; hóngdòu shāCooked and served exactly like mung bean soup & paste. Red bean soup is normally pre-boiled to soften the skin by leaving in hot water for one hour. Then cook in water for 20–30 minutes until the beans rupture. The adding of sugar or rock sugar is lastly added to cook for another 20–30 minutes until the bean texture becomes sandy. As for red bean paste, the skin is removed before cooking. Chinese herbs may be added to enhance the flavour and taste.
Sai mai lo or Sago西米露; xī mǐ lùA dessert soup of pearl tapioca, coconut and evaporated milk
Mung bean soup绿豆汤; 綠豆湯; lǜdòu tāng or 绿豆沙; 綠豆沙; lǜdòu shāMade from mung beans and cooked exactly like red bean soup/paste, sometimes also served with seaweed
Six flavors soup六味汤; 六味湯; liùwèi tāngA sweet curative soup made for hot summer, one of many "numbered" medicinal soups
Peanut paste soup花生糊; huāshēng húLike black sesame paste, peanut paste is a ground peanut powder cooked with syrup and water. Instant peanut paste powder sold in Asian supermarket are usually sweetened roasted peanut powder or flour, that only required to be served with hot water.
Steamed egg custard炖蛋; 燉蛋; dùn dàn
Steamed milk custard炖奶; 燉奶; dùn nǎi
Sweet potato soup番薯糖水; fānshǔ tángshuǐPeeled sweet potato, normally cut into smaller pieces cooked/ boiled with syrup and water.
Sweet almond soup杏仁糊; xìngrén húGround almond powder that cooked with sugar and water. Instant almond powder sold in Asian supermarket are usually sweetened raw almond flour or powder, requires minimal cooking with boiling water or to be served after mixing with hot water for 15 minutes.
Sweet walnut soup核桃糊; hétáo hú or 合桃糊; hé táo húGround walnut powder that cooked with sugar and water, sometimes milk. Similar to Sweet almond soup, instant walnut powder is sold in Asian supermarket as well.

See also


  1. So Good Blog. "Hong Kong: the Sugar Land of Sweet Soup (Tong Sui)." Wenna Pang. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
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