Sotanghon Bola-Bola

it’s been warm out… but that doesn’t stop a hernandez from making hot soup! this is one of my favorite dishes that my pops makes. i always use to think it was super tough to make, but it’s really simple. This amount ended up lasting several days (of lunches)


  • 7-8 cups beef stock*
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1/2 head of garlic – minced
  • 1/2 medium onion – sliced
  • 10-15 meatballs*
  • 1 tbsp patis (fish sauce)*
  • 4-5 dried chinese black mushrooms (shiitake)
  • 200 gm sotanghon (bean thread) noodles
  • 1 head napa cabbage – roughly chopped
  • 1 bunch green onions – chopped


  1. Soak the dried mushrooms in hot water for about 15 minutes. Remove and squeeze out excess water. Slice them into thin strips
  2. Heat oil in a pot and sautee garlic and onion on low to medium heat
  3. Add meatballs, mushrooms and patis. Cover and simmer for about 3 minutes
  4. Add beef stock and bring to boil
  5. Drop the noodles into the pot and simmer for about 3 minutes or until noodles are tender and cooked. I suggest using scissors to cut the noodles up
  6. Add cabbage to the pot
  7. Serve with green onions as a garnish
  8. Boomski

*Side notes:

I made my beef stock with bouillon cubes. 1 cube per 2 cups of water. When it came time to add stock, I just added the water and cubes and mixed around

Why make your own meatballs when you can buy some perfectly good frozen ones from costco!

Also, I’m on the fence on the patis thing. I’m not hardcore and when I put it in the pot, it made the whole house smell bad. You don’t taste it at all in the end so I’m thinking it’s just used to add salt to the dish. I’m going to cut it out the next time…

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