Thursday, April 14, 2011

Book Twenty-Eight: Getting Thin and Loving Food

by Kathleen Daelemans

                                                                             Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

The hubby was coming down with what sounded like a nasty cold and so I wanted to make something soothing, yet intense enough to burn the bug. I thought of hot and sour soup. The recipes I found called for ingredients that I would not find at the local supermarket; and I did not have the time to shop for unfamiliar ingredients in an unfamiliar Asian market.

Then I found this recipe. It was simple to prepare and I was able to obtain all the ingredients at my local market. Though I must say that my market was short on Chinese vegetables, so I used a combination of savoy cabbage (the napa cabbage was in bad shape), daikon radish, and a couple of cremini mushrooms.

This soup has inspired me to try more asian cooking. I so want to make the hot and sour soup and I will when I have more time to explore the Asian market.

Success meter (1-3): 3

Asian Chicken Noodle Soup
Serves 4

8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
¼ cup rice vinegar
2 Tbl rice wine (mirin)
2 tsp Asian sesame oil
½ tsp Vietnamese chili paste (I used Hunan Chili Sauce)
2 Tbl minced fresh ginger
1 Tbl sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
¾ pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut crosswise into thin strips
4 cups Chinese vegetables or napa cabbage, chopped
1 5oz package rice-stick noodles, prepared according to package directions
6 scallions, white and some green parts, thinly sliced on the bias
½ cup loosely packed, coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the broth, vinegar, rice wine, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, chili paste, ginger, sugar, and garlic. Add soy sauce, chicken, and vegetables. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, add remaining 1 teaspoon sesame oil, and cook until chicken is done and vegetables are heated through, about 5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Pour over prepared rice noodles. Garnish with scallions and cilantro and serve.

Note: For the noodles you will want to cut them in small pieces for it is impossible to get them on the spoon if left whole. I used tongs to hold the cooked noodles and then used scissors to cut into small pieces.

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