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Sotanghon at Bola Bola Sopas

When I make lumpiang shanghai, I usually make twice the meat filling. As I’ve said, these Filipino-style spring rolls stock well in the freezer and are perfect for days when I am too pressed to prepare anything else for lunch or when guests drop by impromptu. But mostly, I have the filling handy and ready in the freezer to use for other meal ideas as well. This sotanghon at bola bola sopas is only a matter of defrosting the meat mixture, shaping it into balls and a quick twenty minutes on the stove. With spoonfuls of noodles, napa cabbage, meatballs and broth, it makes a light yet satisfying meal.

Sotanghon at Bola-Bola Sopas (Vermicelli and Meatball Soup

Sotanghon at Bola Bola Sopas (Cellophane Noodles and Meatball Soup)

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4 Servings

Sotanghon at Bola Bola Sopas (Cellophane Noodles and Meatball Soup)


  • 2 ounces Sotanghon (cellophane noodles)
  • 2 cups napa cabbage, chopped
  • 1/4 cup Chinese celery, chopped
  • 5 cups chicken stock or plain water
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 shallots or 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • For the Chicken Balls
  • 1/4 pound ground chicken
  • 1/4 cup green onions, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup water chestnuts, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup carrots, shredded
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. In a bowl, combine ground chicken, water chestnuts, green onions, carrots, soy sauce, salt and pepper. Shape meat mixture into 1-inch balls and set aside.
  2. In a pot over medium heat, heat oil. Add shallots and garlic and cook for about 2 minutes or until limp and aromatic. Add water and bring to a boil.
  3. Gently drop meatballs into boiling water and cook, skimming scum that arises to top, for about 3 to 5 minutes or until meat changes color. Lower heat and simmer for about 10 minutes or until meat is fully cooked through.
  4. Add noodles and cook for about 2 to 4 minutes or until translucent and softened.
  5. Generously season with pepper and salt to taste. Add cabbage and chinese celery and continue to cook for about 2 to 3 minutes or until cabbage is tender yet crisp. Serve hot.


Make sure water is boiling before adding meatballs to prevent them from falling apart. If reheating soup, add more water and adjust seasonings as needed.


Sotanghon at Bola-Bola Sopas (Vermicelli and Meatball Soup)


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