Thursday, October 14, 2010

spicy vietnamese chicken noodle soup

This soup was another successful dish from Around My French Table.   If you're not a history buff, you may be wondering why a Vietnamese soup in a French cookbook.  The answer? Vietnam was a former colony of France from 1885-1954.  According to the Dorie, it's not uncommon to find Vietnamese restaurants in France, even in the smallest villages.   This soup is a combination of two traditional Vietnamese soups: pho ga and la sa ga.  Pho ga has a clear chicken broth with noodles and la sa ga is a coconut milk soup.  If you want the curry version, call it bonne idee. I chose to prepare it without the curry.



































At times shopping for the ingredients felt like a scavenger hunt.  I made trips to two different stores to find what I needed.  Before I entered the local Asian market I didn't know there were so many fish sauces.  The one I selected was a crab-flavored fish sauce.  I purchased my Hoisin sauce, Asian chile oil and Chinese noodles at the Asian market too.  I couldn't find the egg noodles called for, so went with the steamed noodles.  Then it was off to the second store to find star anise, whole coriander seeds, Thai red chiles, and Thai basil. No luck with the Thai basil.  I just used plain basil.  I was happy to find star anise, along with the coriander seeds, in the bulk section.  I filled the rest of my grocery cart with...cilantro, onion, garlic, ginger, chicken broth, coconut milk, chicken, limes, mint leaves, and bean sprouts.

Most of the prep...the broth and cooking the chicken...can be done ahead.  When you're ready to serve it, it's just a matter of reheating the broth, boiling the noodles for just a few minutes, adding the chicken and noodles,  and seasoning to taste.   Very quick.

For me, the flavor was salty/sour.  I love lime, and I think it really accentuated the multitude of flavors in this soup.  I also like noodles, so I added more than the recipe called for.  It was filling, satisfying, and gave me a warm feeling.  Nice when there's a chill in the air.  I would definitely repeat this recipe.  Now if I can just get my husband to eat soup so we could share in the goodness!  Guess it just means more for me.

Next week with French Fridays with Dorie:  hachis parmentier.  I'm really looking forward to this one being a meat and potatoes girl!

13 comments:

Tia said...

your pictures are stunning! i'm very impressed.

Good Bite In said...

lovely pictures (and soup!) .... your blog looks really nice.

Sis. Boom. said...

I had to venture into two Asian markets too. Well worth it. Your soup looks amazing! Great photos!
Trevor Sis Boom.

Frolicking Night Owl said...

Very nice photos!!

Mary said...

Beautiful picture. I am excited for the meat and potatoes recipe too!

M said...

Thanks, everyone, for your generous comments!

M

wanderlustforfood said...

Beautiful photos! I love the look of your blog and your soup looks fantastic.

Clivia said...

You're right, it was a scavenger hunt for the ingredients. Your soup looks delicious!

steph- whisk/spoon said...

beautiful bowls of soup! yes, lot's of noodles is the way to go, and your scavenger hunt for ingredients sounds like fun to me.

Mary said...

Fabulous looking soup, and great idea to add extra noodles. i still have a ton of stock, so I may be making this again soon!
:)

scrambledhenfruit said...

Beautiful soup, beautiful photos! I had difficulty finding some of the ingredients too- I live in a very rural area.

Beth said...

What a beautiful site. The soup warmed me up too. I can't wait to see more of your posts B

♥Sugar♥Plum♥Fairy♥ said...

I would love the crab flavored fish sauce,have never seen it around, but must coz i plan to make dis soup next with lemongrass ,shrimps, calamari and crab meat!!
I love the way ur soup turned!!

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