Thai Coconut Chicken Soup

This recipe comes from Cuisine Tonight: Cuisine Lite, a magazine my Mom picked up somewhere. This soup is delicious and very quick and easy to throw together. It is one we both highly recommend. I hope you enjoy!

Thai Coconut Chicken Soup
Prep time: 5-10 minutes
Cook time: 25-30 minutes
Serves: 4

2 tsp olive oil or vegetable oil
1 Tbsp minced red chile, plus more sliced for garnish if desired
2 tsp minced garlic
1 bunch baby bok choy, chopped (separate stems and leaves)
4 cups chicken broth (low-sodium preferred)
1 can coconut milk (light preferred)
2 tsp curry powder
4 oz. wide rice noodles
10 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast, sliced thin
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
2 Tbsp lime juice
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Heat oil in large saucepan. Add 1 tbsp chile pepper, garlic, and bok choy stems. Sauté until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup broth, scraping up any browned bits on bottom of pan. Add remaining broth, coconut milk, and curry powder; bring to a simmer. Stir in noodles and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in bok choy leaves, and chicken. Simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.

Remove soup from heat, and add lime juice and cilantro. Season to taste with salt and pepper; garnish with slices of remaining chili pepper, lime wedges, and serve hot.

Nutritional Information, per serving: 325 cal, 9g fat (6g saturated fat, 2g mono, 1g poly), 46mg cholesterol, 499mg sodium, 30g carb (2g fiber, 3g total sugars), 22g protein, 1mg iron, 21mg calcium.

thai coconut curry soup

Beef Soup with Star Anise (Pretty-Much-Pho)

As some of you may already know, I love Pho, aka Vietnamese Noodle Soup. My favourite is satay beef. I have once before tried to make this at home and found it to be not worth the effort. Especially when I can drive 10 minutes down the road and buy a bowl for $8.95. BUT then my amazing mother rescued me with this gem. It is technically Thai, not Vietnamese, and the recipe is called Beef Stew with Star Anise, but I will hence-forth refer to it as Pretty-Much-Pho. Hope you enjoy!

Beef Soup with Star Anise (Pretty-Much-Pho)
Prep time: 5-10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Serves 2

1 litre beef broth (no salt added)
450g beef, sliced into slivers (I used two rib-eye steaks)
3 garlic cloves minced
2 cinnamon sticks
4 whole star anise (if you do not have star anise, use a pinch of all spice powder)
30ml low-sodium soy sauce (or 2 tbsp)
30ml fish sauce (or 2 tbsp)
1 tsp sugar
115g bag bean sprouts
1 package rice vermicelli noodles
1 green onion, finely chopped (for garnish)
Cilantro, coarsely chopped (for garnish)
Hot pepper sauce, if desired

Pour the stock into a pot, add the garlic, cinnamon sticks, star anise, soya sauce, fish sauce and sugar. Bring to a boil, add beef, and reduce heat to a simmer for 30 minutes.  Skim off any form that rises to the surface of the liquid.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil; add vermicelli noodles and cook 3-5 minutes until soft. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.

Divide the noodles and bean sprouts among 2 bowls.  Remove and discard the cinnamon sticks and star anise from soup before serving.  Ladle the soup over the bean sprouts and noodles, garnish with green onion and cilantro. Add hot sauce (Sriracha or Sambal Oelek recommended) if desired.

This recipe originally comes from Thai, the Essence of Asian Cooking by Judy Bastyra. I added in noodles and hot sauce. 

20140330-093130.jpg

Pad Thai

I love Pad Thai. Probably more than I should. It’s such a simple dish, but so delicious! You can buy many premade sauces and pastes and powders at any large grocery store, but of course I have to try everything from scratch at least once. I am very pleased with how dinner turned it tonight and I know it’s going to be a household favorite! I love shrimp and tofu in my Pad Thai, but you can include chicken, pork, or just vegetables if you like. Hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Pad Thai
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 20-40 min
Serves 2-4

1 package stir fry rice noodles (thin)
1lb shrimp, peeled and deveined, detailed
1 package extra firm tofu
2 bell peppers, chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
1/2 cup peanuts
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup fish sauce
3 tbsp white sugar
1 tsp dried red chili flakes
Black pepper
1-2 tsp lime juice
1 egg, scrambled
Bean sprouts, optional

Soak noodles in room temperature water until soft, throughout prep time.

Cut tofu into bite-sized chunks. For extra delicious crispy tofu, fry in butter or margarine over medium high heat and fry until brown and crispy on all sides. Set aside.

Sauté peanuts over medium heat in a large wok or deep pot until lightly roasted. Set aside.

Combine fish sauce, sugar, chili flakes, black pepper and lime juice in a small dish.

Sauté bell peppers, shallots, and garlic over medium heat until soft. Add peanuts, tofu and shrimp. Add noodles and sauce mixture. Cover and let noodles finish cooking by absorbing the sauce. Add water if needed, but try not to dilute the flavor too much. Push noodles aside in pan to make room for the egg in the middle, and cook (scrambled; if you’d prefer you can cook it separately and add it in later). Mix it all together, and serve with fresh bean sprouts.

20130219-202829.jpg

Original recipe found here: click here.

Mango Curry Shrimp Salad in Wonton Cups

Here is a much sought-after recipe from my Mom! Be prepared to have to make this for every party you are ever invited to from now until the end of time!

These appetizers are a highly requested item by my friends and family.  Very easy to make and can be made ahead of time, with the exception of putting them in the Siljans or WonTon Wrappers.

You can either make your own crispy wonton wrappers, or purchase the Siljans (blue box – typically in the bakery section or above the olives in Safeway, or in the deli aisle at Sobeys).  I have used the Siljans and they are just as good as the wonton wrappers and a lot less work as well as less fragile.  I put in a little more green curry than 3/4 teaspoon, but start with the recommended amount and let it sit for a bit before adding more.  Green Curry paste is hotter than the red curry paste.

Mango Curry Shrimp Salad
Prep time: 20 minutes (depending on how much you are making)
Yields: 48 wonton cups (approx. 10 people)

1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
5 teaspoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons mango chutney
3/4 teaspoon Thai green curry paste* (to taste)
12 ounces peeled cooked medium shrimp, coarsely chopped
Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Whisk mayonnaise, chopped fresh cilantro, lime juice, chutney, and curry paste in medium bowl to blend. Stir in cooked shrimp. Season salad to taste with salt and pepper. (Salad can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Place wonton cups on serving platter. Spoon 1 teaspoon shrimp salad into each cup. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves.

*Thai green curry paste is available at Asian markets and in the Asian foods section of some supermarkets.  It comes in a small jar.  You can adjust the amount of green curry to your taste. It’s best to let the salad sit for a while in the fridge before taste testing.

Wonton ‘Cups’

12 wonton wrappers (from one 12-ounce package, found in the produce section of most grocery stores), each cut into 4 squares.  Brush with oil on one side, and press into a miniature muffin cup, oil side down.  Bake until wonton cups are golden (about 10 minutes).  Cool completely before filling.  Can be made up to three days ahead, store in airtight container at room temperature. (Left-over wonton wrappers can be frozen, but I recommend freezing them with wax paper in between or in smaller bunches, as you have to thaw completely in order to peel them apart.)

Salmon in Coconut Ginger Sauce

This was a fun experiment for us, and it turned out amazing! So much so in fact that I took the leftovers into work to share. The best parts? This dish can be served two ways – as dinner or as an appetizer. And it’s pretty easy to prepare. Enjoy!

Salmon in Coconut Ginger Sauce – dinner
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Serves 2-4

2-4 salmon fillets
8 tsp soy sauce

1 tbsp oil
2 tsp fresh shallots, chopped
2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 cup coconut milk
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp lime zest
2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped

Marinate salmon in soy sauce for 1 hour in fridge. Transfer to oven-safe dish, pour soy sauce marinade over fish, and bake for 15-20 minutes at 375F, or until salmon is cooked.

Meanwhile, prepare sauce. Fry shallots and ginger in oil over medium heat until soft and translucent. Add coconut milk, and bring almost to a boil (over medium heat). Add soy sauce, sugar, lime juice, zest, and basil. Makes approx. 1.5 cups of sauce.

Serve salmon with rice, pour sauce over both and serve. Add fresh basil leaf as garnish if desired.

———————————————–

Salmon Wraps with Coconut Ginger Sauce – appetizer
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Serves: 10

5 salmon fillets
5 tsp soy sauce
package of rice paper wraps*
fresh basil leaves
fresh ginger, grated

Coconut Ginger sauce (recipe above)

Slice salmon fillets into squares, approx. 2″x2″ (1″ thick). Marinate in soy sauce for 1 hour in fridge.

Fill a wide shallow pan with water, and heat over medium heat. Keep water just hot enough to have some steam but not boiling.

Now comes the fun part. Tear apart your basil leaves, and set them aside in a dish. Grate your ginger, and set it in another dish to the side. Now, take a rice paper wrap, and put it into the warm water. Make sure it gets fully submerged and doesn’t curl up along the edges. Soak for 1-2 minutes until soft. LIft from water with tongs, and let excess water drip from wrapper. Unfold and lay flat on a cutting board. Cut wrapper in half (if the wrappers are large – if they are small, no need). Place a piece of basil in the center. Add some fresh ginger. Top with a piece of salmon. Fold the wrapper over the salmon, and set aside to cook. Repeat until you’ve used all the salmon.

To cook, heat 2 tbsp oil in a large pot. Carefully place salmon wraps into oil and cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Carefully flip wrappers and cook on the other side for additional 2 minutes. If you’re talented enough, use your tongs to briefly fry the sides of the wrapper for 30 seconds each side. Lift from oil, let excess oil drain off, and transfer to serving plate. Repeat until all wrappers are cooked. (You can try using a deep fryer to cook these as well – I have not yet tried.)

Stick with toothpicks, and serve with Coconut Ginger sauce.

*rice paper wrappers can be found in the Asian or Ethnic aisle of most grocery stores, or in any local Asian or Ethnic grocery store. For anyone in Calgary, I recommend T&T Market on Harvest Hills Blvd.

This recipe came from New Thai Cusine by Nathan Hyam, with some modifications.

Chicken Curry with Dried Apricots

… everything! Seriously, it’s like once you have a child, you’re suddenly a superhero. And so I present with pride my own mother, who is graciously going to share some of her secrets with us. I hope you find her recipes as delicious as I do! Here is the first of many recipes to come from my mum.

—————————

This recipe is from Epicurious.com.  I was searching for curry recipes for my annual Curry Fest and found this recipe.  It has become a favorite at my annual Fests, and if I do not make it everyone is very disappointed.  My annual Curry Fests are now in the 5th year, and Chicken Curry with Dried Apricots has been there every year.  Some of my Curry Fests were based on colour, and this satisfies the ‘red’ curry.

Here is the recipe for Chicken Curry with Dried Apricots:

2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped shallots (if you do not want to use shallots, use a mild onion)
1 Tbsp red curry paste (found in the international aisles of the grocery stores).  Note that you can decrease the amount of curry paste, make it to the level of heat that you want.
1 Tbsp minced peeled ginger (I used the minced ginger in a jar, which works well)
1 lb chicken breasts (boneless and skinned)
2 – 14 ounce cans of unsweetened coconut milk
1/2 cup dried apricots, cut in quarters
2 Tbsp mango chutney (I used Major Grey)
3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Heat veggie oil and added chopped shallots.  Saute until golden brown (about 5 minutes).  Mix in red curry paste and minced ginger, cook for one minute.  Add chicken breasts (chopped into bite size pieces).  Cook for about 6 minutes until chicken is cooked through.  Remove chicken from pot.

Add unsweetened coconut milk and dried apricots to pot, boil until mixture is reduced to 2 1/4 cups, about 10 minutes.  Mixed in mango chutney and 1/2 cup of cilantro  Return cooked chicken to pot.  Stir to heat through.  Serve over rice, and sprinkle with remaining cilantro.

—————————

This is a great recipe for curry beginners and experts alike! I hope you all enjoy this dish as much as we do! My mum isn’t lying about how popular it is!

S. & Mum.