This soup ticks all the boxes - healthy, nourishing, delicious yet is also light all at the same time. I promise you'll feel all good on the inside after you try this Asian soup, jam packed with mushrooms, fragrant lemon grass, kaffir lime and creamy coconut milk! After a long day working sometimes it's nice to know you can create a nourishing meal that will not only be satisfying but also lets you feel like you've done something good for yourself.
While I usually like to make things from scratch, for this recipe I did use a ready-made store bought Thai curry paste but I have to say I was so impressed with the flavor and the dried porcini mushrooms and the liquid that you get from soaking them add so much depth to the taste! I picked up both these items from my local grocery store.
If you are watching your carbs, you can enjoy this soup without the rice noodles too but the rice noodles do give that extra bulk to the dish and I love that they are gluten-free too!
This recipe is so simple and delicious, once you try it, it will be your standard go-to healthy Asian recipe!
YOU WILL NEED
1/2 oz (14 g) dried mushrooms
1+1/2 cups hot water
2 tablespoons olive oil
I medium onion fined chopped
2+1/2cm | 1 inch piece fresh ginger minced or grated
1 medium carrot, diced
1 stalk lemongrass, trimmed and cut into strips
4 cups chopped button mushrooms (you can use a combination e.g. enoki, button, oyster)
A few generous handfuls of bean sprouts
2 x 400ml | 14 oz cans (total 3+1/2 cups coconut milk)
2-3 cups vegetable stock
1 tablespoon kecap manis
2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
Handful of kaffir lime leaves (optional but do add a lovely flavor)
4 chicken breasts sliced into small pieces
2-3 tablespoons lime juice
6-10 leaves Thai basil (optional but nice if you can add them)
Salt (only if needed)
1 packet rice noodles cooked according to the package instructions
2 spring onions, trimmed and chopped for garnish
Fresh chopped red chilli (optional)
Soak the dried mushrooms in the hot water for 15-20 minutes. Keep covered and drain once ready, reserving the liquid.
Heat a large wok over medium-high heat and add the oil. When hot, toss in the chopped onion, ginger, carrot and lemongrass and stir for a few minutes.
Add the fresh and dried mushrooms to the pan and stir for a few minutes. Add a splash or two of the dried mushroom liquid to the pan to keep everything moist and from drying out.
Now add a portion of the bean sprouts, stir, and pour in the coconut milk, the remaining reserved mushroom soaking liquid and 2 cups of the vegetable stock or water. Stir in the kecap manis, Thai curry paste and kaffir lime leaves if using.
Add the chicken.
Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the soup begins to thicken and the chicken is cooked. Add more bean sprouts to the pan, stir and simmer for another minute or so.
Cook the rice noodles as directed on the packet. (Usually you soak, covered in boiling water for 2-3 minutes.) Drain and divide evenly between your bowls.
Remove any lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves. Add a little more vegetable stock if too much has evaporated.
Stir in the lime juice and Thai basil and then taste. If required season with a little salt and a little more curry paste and stir in well.
Serve piping hot in bowls topped with spring onions a few bean sprouts and freshly chopped chilli if desired.