The (colder) winter is here, diets are in and morale is low. The solution: a nice tasty bowl of delicious soup that is both easy to make and a reminder of those exotic holidays spent abroad.
2 tbsp tamarind paste
4 red Thai chillies, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2.5cm/1-inch piece Thai ginger, peeled and very finely chopped
4 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp palm sugar or caster (superfine) sugar
8 lime leaves, roughly torn
1.2 litres/2 pints/5 cups of chicken stock
350 g/12 oz boneless chicken breast
100 g/3 ½ oz carrots, very thinly sliced
350 g/12 ozsweet potato, diced
100 g/3 ½ oz baby corn cobs, halved
3 tbsp fresh coriander (cilantro), roughly chopped
100 g/3 ½ oz cherry tomatoes, halved
150 g/5 ½ oz flat rice noodles
Fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped, to garnish
1. Place the tamarind paste, Thai chillies, garlic, Thai ginger, fish sauce, sugar, lime leaves and chicken stock in a large preheated wok and bring to the boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat and cook for about 5 minutes.
2. Using a sharp knife, thinly slice the chicken. Add the chicken to the wok and cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring the mixture well.
3. Reduce the heat and add the carrots, sweet potato and baby corn cobs to the wok. Leave to simmer uncovered, for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are just tender and the chicken is completely cooked through.
4. Stir in the coriander (cilantro), cherry tomatoes and noodles. Leave the soup to simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the noodles are tender. Garnish and serve hot.
Tamarind paste is produced from the seed pod of the tamarind tree. It adds both a brown colour and tang to soups and gravies. If unavailable, dilute molasses (dark muscovado) sugar or treacle with lime juice.
Bon appetite and be sure to let us know how the recipe turned out for you in the comments’ section below.