Monday, 9 April 2012

Vietnamese Inspired Chicken Soup

Queen Victoria market in Melbourne is my regular market. I bought chicken carcass for the first time. It was $2 dollars for 2 chickens carcass. I was so surprised by how cheap it is. I wanted to try to make my own chicken stock from scratch. I wouldn’t think about what should I do with chicken stocks but I wanted to make very simple and healthy chicken soup.
I was inspired by Vietnamese rice noodle soup ' Pho'. Fresh bean sprout and fragrant coriander would lift up the chicken soup. And rather than having noodles, add heaps of my favourite seasonal vegetable. I think it is much healthier and interesting texture.
So here it goes. Surprisingly there were a lot of chicken meat came out from the chicken carcass. It became a quite sustainable dinner after a long day.

Ingredients (2 Serves)
1 Chicken carcass
A hand full of Bean spout
1 small Zucchini
2 star anises
4 shitake Mushroom ( any seasonal mushroom )
2~3 Spring Onions
1 Fresh Red chilli
A small much of fresh Coriander
Salt and cracked Black pepper
2 tsp of Fish sauce (option)

For stocks
2 clove of garlic
1 brown onion
2 sticks of celery

1.       Clean chicken carcass in cold water and place it in a large stock pot. Pour 8 cups (2L) of water and add roughly chopped brown onion, garlic and celery.
2.        bring it up to boil and cook for about 1 hours in medium heat.
3.       Cool it down and put them in fridge for a couple of hours. When it become cold enough, fat become white solid. Remove the fat from the pot using a spoon and then collect chicken meat from out of the bone using a fork and fingers. Remove all bone and vegetable except meat and stock.
4.        Slice zucchini and mushroom to 4~5cm length & 0.5cm thick. Slice spring onion to similar 5cm length. Slice fresh red chilli to thin.
5.       Heat up chicken stock in a pot. when it is boiled, add sliced vegetable, chilli and star anise and cook for 15 minutes.
6.       Season with salt and black pepper. If you want, add fish sauce.
7.       Add fresh bean spout and fresh coriander in the pot and leave them for about 2~3 minutes.
8.       Serve in bowls.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Salmon asparagus cold buckwheat noodle soup

Have you tried  icy cold noodle soup? It sounds weird to you but this is one of popular dishes in Summer Korea and one of my favorite Korean dishes. It is called 'naengmyeon ' which means Cold noodle in Korean. One day, after my regular seafood shopping in Queens Victoria Market, this recipe came up with ideas of my desire of cold drink and fresh salmon. I was so thirsty and sweating after cycling to the market. Cold noodle soup was perfect for satisfying my urgency. I added blanched asparagus and fresh pea shoots which create crunch texture. The dish almost looks like cold noodle soup salad(?). I love that it is so light and refreshing taste.  Taste ? It is clean beef soup with nutty asparagus. In fact, it is totally different from original Korean Cold noodle soup(naengmyeon) except cold noodle concept but I think it is very simple and nice combination. You will be surprised.
If you have one of hot day, try this. You can satisfy your thirsty by icy cold soup and hunger by fresh crunch salmon salad.

Prep time            20 mins
Cook time           15 mins
Serves                 2

100g of fresh salmon fillet (or soft boiled eggs)
1 bunch of asparagus
1 small handful of pea shoots
2 cups of beef stock
Buckwheat noodle
Korean mustard sauce for spicy

1. Blanch asparagus and wash in cold water. set a side
2. Cook buckwheat noodle for 3 mins in boiling water.  quickly wash in cold water and drain it out.
3. slice fresh salmon fillet into cube ( alternatively, you can use soft boiled eggs and cut it half)
4. place buckwheat noodle in a bowl and place asparagus, pea shoots & fresh salmon nicely. Pour naengmyeon beef stock in the bowl. ( you can get naegmyeon beef stock or vegetable stock in Korean grocery store or you can use own your own)
5. Serve with Korean mustard or wasabi if you like spicy