Thursday, 25 October 2012

Spicy Coconut Chicken Noodle Soup.

For once I actually have a genuine excuse for my absence from this little Blog. 

I got robbed. Literally. 

Two weeks ago, two young scallywags broke into the house, smashing far more windows that was really necessary to get in and swiped various things in the house including my laptop, iPod and all my car keys, making blogging a bit tricky. The crowning glory moment within this farce was probably having to pay to have my own car clamped so it couldn’t be driven away in the middle of the night.

On a more culinary note, I’m really into noodle soup at the moment. When I have my one treat-eat-out-at-work lunch of the week I have been experimenting with the various noodle soups on offer near my office, I can safely say the superfood sobas at Pod are superior to many out there.

This recipe lies somewhere between a tribute to my favourite Kare Lomen at Wagamama and the Vietnamese Pho noodle soup. It has real depth of flavour and is thoroughly heart warming especially given the arctic weather at the moment. Of course due to my chilli addiction mine was practically lava it was so spicy but the fragrance of the lemongrass and galangal along with the creamy luxury of the coconut milk turns this dish into a real, quick, easy week night treat.

Serves 2-3

For The Paste:
2 lemongrass stalks, outer leaves removed, bruised and roughly chopped
2.5 cm piece galangal root, peeled & roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled & finely chopped
2 onions, peeled & roughly chopped
1 red pepper, deseeded & roughly chopped
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 hot red chili, chopped
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp curry powder
1 tsp shrimp paste 

1 tbsp vegetable oil
Enough noodles of your choice cooked to packet instructions
1 Can of coconut milk
Juice of 1 or 2 limes (depending how juicy they are)
2 chicken breasts, sliced into strips
½ pint chicken stock

For Garnish:
2 handfuls of beansprouts
Finely shredded cucumber and spring onion
Fresh coriander finely chopped
Roasted sesame seeds for garnish

In a food processor blitz all the ingredients for the paste until smooth. Add a touch of water to help it blend if necessary.

Sweat the paste in the oil and when fragrant throw in the chicken strips. When they have sealed add the liquids and noodles and bring to a simmer. 

When the chicken is cooked through ladle into deep bowls and serve with the various garnishes.