Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Battling the "Bug" with Thai Coconut Chicken Soup

Like most children of baby boomer moms, I remember mine extolling the virtues of chicken soup whenever my sister or I were down with a "bug"~ no matter if it were of the cold or flu type. Every once in a while we would have the "Italian Penicillin" of my Grandma Pitalo's chicken soup, but having a working mom, we didn't get the homemade stuff too often.
This would generally mean getting out the familiar red and white can along with the can
opener and heating it up according to directions on the stovetop. This, of course, was made even easier when the first microwave oven came into our family's kitchen.

Even so, on the advent of my child's first "bug", I sought that familiar red and white can of my childhood. After using the dreaded canned soup for a few years, I came upon the idea- and a simple recipe- for homemade chicken noodle soup. Needless to say, this revelation opened up a culinary world of soup wonders. My family has been subjected~ or the "test subjects" as they like to quip~ to a virtual plethora of goodness in a soup bowl.

Now that they are either at young adulthood or on the cusp of it, we've been trying some new soups thanks, in part, to the variety of veggies we've been getting in our Gardenripe CSA box~ the last for the season- which I am sorry to say- was delivered last Thursday. It was with much sadness and yet expectation for what next season's boxes may include, that I have tried to think through how to use our remaining stash of farm fresh produce sitting in our fridge and on the counter.

This brings me to our Thai Coconut Chicken Soup. With three sickies in our house dealing with the flu going around, I knew chicken soup was needing to be made. Instead of doing my standard "Multi-Ethnic" Chicken Soup Penicillin, I decided to try something using the bok choy in our fridge. I came across the recipe and adapted it for what I had available. It was indeed a hit with the whole family as everyone liked it. I am not a medical person, but I do know everyone has been starting to feel better ever since they ate the soup last night. It could be just the timing, but who knows, it could be the soup...

Thai Coconut Chicken Soup

3 tablespoons crushed garlic (Don't yell~I used jarred stuff we had- fresh would even be better)
3 tablespoons grated ginger (Again, I used jarred stuff we had- fresh would even be better)
1/4 cup sliced leeks, white and light green part only
1 yellow onion
1 teaspoon each cumin & coriander
1/2 teaspoon (or more to taste) Sriracha Hot Sauce
2 cups cooked and shredded chicken
4 cups shredded bok choy
4 cups water
2 cans coconut milk
1 tablespoon fish sauce, if desired

Saute garlic, ginger, leeks, onion and spices in 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in large soup pot over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes. Add hot sauce & chicken and cook for about 4 minutes to blend flavors. Add remaining ingredients; simmer at least 10 minutes~ it actually tastes better the longer it simmers!!
David likes to serve his with Thai sweet chili sauce~ it adds another dimension to this delicious dish!

1 comment:

  1. Do NOT omit the fish sauce. It definitely gives the correct flavor.