French Fridays with Dorie: Spicy Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup

15 10 2010

I love Tom Kha Gai soup…which is the Thai version of this soup.   Since I dabble in Southeast Asian cuisine, I have ingredients most people might not have…palm sugar, kaffir lime leaves and galanga in particular.  Still, I didn’t want to go to far off the recipe from Dorie’s Around My French Table.  I didn’t have any bean sprouts handy, but I did have some nice mushrooms, so they went in instead.  That being said, we really enjoyed this version of Spicy Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup!  It got an 8 on a 10 scale from the man of the house, and that’s pretty darn good!

I really liked using the roasted chicken breast.   I was fully under control of how cooked it was, the whole time.  The bits and pieces all went together pretty quickly.  I was making a half batch, but dividing a can of coconut milk in half wasn’t going to work terribly well.  One thing we know from dining in Thai restaurants is that there’s a particular richness that we find in some Tom Kha Gai soup that we don’t always find.  It has to do with the ratio of broth to coconut milk in the soup.   I didn’t have any super hot dry chilies…I tend to be really careful of those anyway, it’s hard to get the heat out if you overdo it!  I used crushed red chilies for heat and passed Siracha at the table if anyone wanted more heat.  As it was, we had a really nice balance of hot and sour with a little sweet underlying.  It’s a keeper…and will be my go-to recipe until something better comes along – yeah, right!

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