How Do I Select Dried Bird's Nest?

How Do I Select Dried Bird's Nest?

What is bird's nest?

Coveted for its rich proteins and minerals, taking bird's nest regularly helps stimulate the appetite, speed recovery from illness, invigorate the lungs, boost immunity, and improve the body’s overall metabolic functions. As an added bonus, it keeps your skin looking youthful and glowy!

Bird’s nest has been a Chinese delicacy for centuries. The nest consists of interwoven strands of saliva built on the side of a cave during mating season. The world's bird's nest originates from South East Asia, mainly Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia. The edible bird’s nests are among the most expensive animal products consumed by humans.

Helpful tips for choosing the right kind for you: 

  • House nest is harvested from man-made facilities. Although the facility is artificial, the swallows fly in and out freely.
  • Cave nest (洞燕) is slightly more expensive than house nest because the nest is harvested from caves instead of man-made facilities.
  • Premium bird's nest is red nest cup, commonly known as "blood yan" (血燕). The red color comes from the presence of minerals such as iron from the cave walls. These minerals are absorbed from the cave wall by the nest in combination with the humid environment causes iron oxidation which turns the nest red.
  • With high quality bird's nest, you can boil for hours at a time and the pieces will not disintegrate; the cooked texture should be firm and have some "bite."
  • Whiter does not always mean cleaner. Oftentimes, producers use edible bleach to whiten the nests to appear cleaner. Removing bird's nest feathers in the processing centers is labor intensive, so dyeing is a "short-cut." If you see some feathers or dark bits in the dried bird's nest, just simply pick it out after it has softened from soaking. 
  • Po Wing Hong Food Market meticulously vets out suppliers who only provide authentic and high quality bird's nest at fair prices. 

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  • Sophia Tsao
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