The Sticky Thai Chicken recipe I made several days ago was so good and I wanted more of all those wonderful Thai flavors – sour, spicy, salty, savory. This delicious chicken soup satisfied my cravings. Thai food is so easy to prepare at home if you have a few basic ingredients in your pantry. My grocery store carries almost everything I need for most Thai recipes and the harder to find items can be purchased in any good Asian market. I started this soup with a broth made of coconut milk and chicken stock and added red chili paste for flavor and heat, the ginger, lemon grass, lime and fish sauce (nam pla). I chose chicken for this recipe but pork or shrimp would work just as well. Use whatever vegetables you prefer, I picked green beans, diced eggplant and bok choy for this soup, but carrots, bean sprouts, even potato would be delicious as well. No need to cook the veggies ahead of time. Just let them simmer in the broth until they are tender. I used rice noodles in this particular recipe (a small handful is enough for 4 people if you like lots of broth in each serving). Taste as you go when adding red curry paste. I used 2 tablespoons for medium heat. I picked all the chunks of eggplant out of the soup pot first (so delicious) so will add a third one the next time.
My daughter, granddaughter and great-grandson will arrive next week from Chicago and we will celebrate three birthdays while they are here: my son’s, granddaughter’s and great-grandson’s (born on Valentine’s Day one year ago). This Thai soup will be on the menu along with all their birthday dinner favorites. The celebration dinner will start off with Dungeness Crab Caesar Salad and end with Strawberry Whipped Cream Roll and Blum’s Coffee Toffee Pie. What comes between these courses is still under negotiation. Be on the lookout for some of our favorite recipes in the next two weeks.
- 2 tablespoon Thai red curry paste, or to taste
- 12 ounces skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into narrow strips
- 4 ounces green beans
- 1 small head bok choy, sliced into ½ inch slices
- 2 small Japanese eggplants, halved lengthwise and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3 cups canned or homemade chicken stock
- 2 cans unsweetened coconut milk
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 2 stalks lemon grass, halved, white part only
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce (nam pla)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 3 ounces rice noodles
- Scoop the thick coconut cream from the top of one of the cans of coconut milk into a large stockpot set over medium-high heat. Melt the cream, add the curry paste and stir for a few minutes until they begin to sizzle.
- Add the chicken and saute until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add green beans and eggplant and stir for another 5 minutes.
- Add the remaining coconut milk from the 2 cans, the chicken broth, lemon grass, fish sauce, lime juice and brown sugar. Grate the ginger into the broth with a microplane grater or standard box grater. Simmer for 20-30 minutes.
- Stir in the bok choy. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add the rice noodles, gently pushing them beneath the surface of the broth. turn off the heat and let stand until the noodles soften, about 5 minutes. Rice noodles don't need to simmer like pasta to cook. They simply need to rehydrate in the hot liquid.
- Stir in most of the cilantro. Remove the lemon grass stalks. Taste and season with a dash of salt or soy sauce as needed. Ladle into large bowls and garnish with green onion slices and more chopped cilantro.