It’s hardly soup weather anymore. Tax season ended with 80+° weather, and it’s hovered in that range ever since. Despite it being pizza week [think burger week, but y’know, with pizza], I made Thai basil pork my first meal back in the kitchen. Surprise, surprise. I have grand plans, but I’m easing back into it. Besides, pizza week.
This soup was stellar in that way that making something from scratch can be. I had a Massaman curry paste container in the fridge, but I went with the directions. Fresh lemongrass? Check. Fresh ginger? Check. Thai chilies? Check. It’s really, really simple in that way. It makes for a more complex chicken noodle soup, a soup that I normally avoid for its plainness. I spent way more time julienning carrots than I care to admit. My knife skills aren’t THAT good, and I don’t have
time space for some fancy peeler. It left me with a ridiculous satisfaction though. Worth it.
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce + more to taste
- 2 stalks of lemongrass
- 4″ piece of ginger root, peeled
- 2 Thai chilies
- 4 large garlic cloves
- 2 boneless chicken breasts
- 3 large carrots
- 10 small baby potatoes, halved or quartered
- 3 scallions, greens and white parts sliced and separated
- 1 cup full fat coconut milk
- 1/2 tablespoon curry powder
- 12-14oz udon/rice noodles
- 1/4 cup toasted peanuts
- Lime juice
Heat the chicken stock and fish sauce in a large pot on medium-high heat. Remove the tough, outer shells of the lemongrass stalks. Cut off the root, and then into 6″ pieces. Cut those pieces in half. Add the lemongrass pieces to the stock. Cut the ginger into slices and add to the pot. Smash and peel the garlic cloves and add those. Slice the tops off the chilies and then cut them in half. Scrape out the seeds, or leave them in for more heat. Add to the stock. Increase the heat if the stock hasn’t started simmering.
Cut the carrots so they’re close to a uniform diameter the whole way. You can julienne those pieces for garnish. Slice the remaining carrots into thin medallions and set aside with the potatoes.
Taste the stock for salt or more fish sauce. You want it to be fairly salty to stand up to the chicken and vegetables it’s about to cook. Add the chicken breast. Simmer until cooked through, about 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool before shredding.
Skim the stock to remove the lemongrass, garlic, and ginger. Stir in the curry powder and add the carrots, potatoes, and peanuts. Cook until tender. Slice up the scallions, leaving the sliced dark green parts for garnish. Stir in the coconut milk, shredded chicken, and remaining scallions. Once the noodles are cooked through, the soup is ready to serve in bowls topped with the remaining scallions. Taste for more fish sauce or lime juice.