West Lake Beef Soup

When our team was in Hong Kong, we participated in a cooking lesson and demonstration with Michelin-star Chef Charles Cheung and created this classic Chinese soup.  Commonly found as a starter or appetizer, West Lake Beef Soup is local to the Zhejiang region in Hangzhou, China, and is named after the scenic freshwater lake found there. Some say the starch and egg white in this soup resemble the ripples of the West Lake, but you'll have to make it for yourself and let us know!

MAKES 4 Servings |  PREP TIME 20 Min. TOTAL TIME 45 Min. 


  • 1 Lucky Iron Fish
  • 1 cup (200 g) ground beef
  • 8 pcs straw mushrooms, diced
  • 2 egg whites 
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped cilantro/coriander
  • 1 tbsp diced scallion 
  • 2 3/4 cup (650 ml) chicken broth
  • 2 3/4 cup (650 ml) water 
  • 1/4 cup corn starch

    Beef Seasoning 
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp soya sauce 
  • 1 1/4 tsp corn starch
  • 1 Tbsp water

    Soup Seasoning
  • 1/2 Tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp soya sauce 


  1. Stir-fry the beef and beef seasoning in a hot pan until thoroughly cooked
  2. Rinse the beef under tap water
  3. Bring the chicken broth and water to a boil, add Lucky Iron Fish, beef, cilantro, mushrooms and soup seasoning (salt, sugar, pepper, soya sauce) Simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove Lucky Iron Fish, clean and dry thoroughly
  5. Mix the corn starch with water
  6. Turn off heat, gently add and stir the corn starch + water mix into the soup
  7. Bring soup back to a boil, add in egg whites and scallions
  8. Serve when egg whites are set


    • @H.FAN
      The rust is harmless, however, it’s less absorbable by the body. You can scrub it off with lemon juice and a scouring pad. Also, you are correct, that only consuming half of the litre will mean you only take in half of the 4-7mg of iron released by the Lucky Iron Fish.

      Lucky Iron Fish
    • I washed the iron fish with soap and water after used but still cannot get rid of all the rust. My hubby insists it’s not good to take rust when we use the fish in cooking again.

      Since the water boiled with the iron fish will provide around 7mg of iron in 1 L of water, if I only drink half a litre does it mean I would only get 3.5mg of iron?
      Please advise.

    • @M.STEVENS: Thanks for your note! Even people who eat meat may want an additional iron boost!

      Lucky Iron Fish
    • I don’t understand why use the iron fish if one is eating beef? I’m eating mostly vegan, so I can see the need for the iron fish in my diet.

      M. Stevens

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