Chicken Noodle Soup

Chicken is the most versatile ingredient in the kitchen. Especially when cooking with chicken breast (as I often do), you can come up with the unique flavour combinations and the chicken will be able to carry it.

If you’re like me and have a particular penchant for cooking chicken, then you’ll understand the pain of having leftover chicken in the fridge. My love for this bird is so great that a roasted chicken is always my go to when I have a crowd of people to feed.

Its easy on the wallet, doesn’t take much to get the chicken well-cooked and delicious, plus it looks a helluva impressive on the dinner table. I am fully guilty of using my roasted chicken as an edible centrepiece during dinner! A little tip when roasting: ensure that you use plenty of butter. It works as a moisturizer for the chicken and helps the skin crisp up nicely.

It was during one of these parties where I roasted an entire chicken and had all the breast meat leftover, sitting in the fridge. This is far from a bad thing for me, being a lover of breast meat. But I don’t own a microwave in the house, so I have to come up with creative ways to eat the chicken when it comes to reheating it. If I roast it again in the oven, it’ll get too dry and stringy. If I decide to sear it on the pan, it burns on the outside and is still cold on the inside. And I cannot be arsed to check the heat on and off for heating up chicken, I mean really.

That’s when I thought of this recipe. To ensure that I use up the remaining breast meat with gusto, pride and chilli padi. I am a big fan of coconut milk, and I’ve only ever used it in Chicken Curry before. And in this divine Lemon Tender cake by Nigella. This was surely a deviation, to make soup out of coconut milk and have it with rice noodles.

This is a super easy dish to whip up on a Sunday morning for lunch. I kept it for dinner as well, because even I am not crazy enough to cook one meal for lunch and another for dinner. You need very basic, store cupboard ingredients. The only one that I foresee being a trouble is the tamarind paste. I found this tamarind paste concentrate in Mustafa Shopping Centre (where they have everything). If you can’t find this, you can use the regular tamarind that’s sold in NTUC. Just dissolve the tamarind in the 300ml of water, and drain it before adding it to the coconut milk mixture. Alternatively, you can use lemon juice. However, lemon juice or vinegar has a different, sharper tang when compared to tamarind. So expect a different flavour altogether, though I suspect it’ll be just as good!

A little note about the noodles: I used thick(ish) rice noodles here, almost like kway Teow. These noodles, while delicious, can get claggy and finicky once you’ve drained them. Cook only the amount needed, and serve immediately after draining.

Chicken Noodle Soup

Prep Time: 7 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 17 minutes

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 Thai Bird Eyed Chillies, chopped
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Tamarind
  • 1/2 Tbsp Turmeric Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 200ml Coconut Milk
  • 200g Chicken, cooked and shredded
  • 300ml Water
  • Noodles (only cook this when you're about to eat)
  • 100g Thick rice noodles (per person)
  • Hot water

Method

  1. Place a heavy bottomed pan over medium heat and pour in the oil, followed by the mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds start popping, add the chillies followed by the garlic. Fry till fragrant, about 2 mins.
  2. Add the tamarind paste, Turmeric, fish sauce, coconut milk and chicken. Stir to combine, then add the water. Allow mixture to simmer for 3 mins.
  3. Just before eating, place noodles in a bowl and pour hot water to cover it. Leave it for about 5 to 10 mins. Assemble the dish by place noodles in a bowl and ladling the soup over. Garnish with coriander leaves and dig in.
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