I realize for most people, the last thing they want to do when they're sick is to cook, but for some reason, cooking relaxes me, and this soup instantly makes me feel better.
For years, people have been using chicken noodle soup as a remedy for colds. I'm sure there's some scientific evidence that backs this up, but all I know is it tastes good and it's relatively simple to prepare.
This one puts an Asian twist on an old classic. Instead of egg noodles, it uses Thai rice noodles. It features fresh herbs and also provides a little heat, which always seems to make me feel better when I'm battling the sniffles. (Thanks Kelly Cisek for giving me my go-to home medicine).
First, you'll need some fresh herbs and vegetables. I used green beans, green onions, garlic, ginger, mushrooms, basil and mint but you could add other things like carrots, celery, cabbage, cilantro or whatever you have on hand. And chicken of course, though this isn't pictured. (Hey, I'm still getting used to taking photos while I'm cooking...obviously I haven't perfected the technique yet).
BTW...don't you just love those little orange prep bowls from Mario Batali? They come in different sizes so they "nest" in your cupboard, and they also have lines inside to help with measuring. (I love kitchen gadgets/stuff).
Anyways, once, you've chopped everything up....heat some oil in a large wok or pot. Add the ginger and garlic, and once those have cooked for about 30 seconds, add the raw chopped chicken and saute until it's cooked. In the meantime, boil some water and cook the rice noodles according to the package directions...careful, they cook FAST!
Then you add everything else, let it simmer together for a bit, and VOILA! Easy homemade chicken soup with an Asian twist!
Asian Chicken Noodle Soup
(makes 4-6 servings, adapted from Sunset Magazine 2010)
- 6 ounces Thai flat rice noodles
- 1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoonminced fresh ginger
- 8 ounces long or green beans, cut into 1-in. pieces
- 1/2 cup chopped shitake or crimini mushrooms
- 1-2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1/4 cup Thai fish sauce*
- 5-6 cup chicken broth (or homemade chicken stock)
- Juice of 2 limes
- Siracha sauce or red pepper flakes (to taste)
- Pinch of sugar (to taste)
- 1/2 cup each chopped fresh basil, chopped fresh mint, chopped green onions (divided into 2 equal servings)
- Bring a pot of water to a boil, and add noodles when boiling. Cook until tender (only takes 2-4 min.)
- Heat oil in large wok or pot over med-high heat. Add garlic, beans and chicken. Cook until chicken is cooked through.
- Add remaining ingredients into wok with chicken, including 1/4 c. each basil, mint and onions. Bring to a boil.
- Drain noodles and stir into chicken mixture.
- Transfer soup to serving bowls, and sprinkle soup with remaining herbs and onions.
*Note, fish sauce is very salty, so taste the soup before adding any salt!