I love soup! I love making it and I love eating it! It is my be all and end all element, as it can be a meal in itself, eaten with rice or noodles, or a basis for other dishes when used as a stock. In fact when I make a pot of chicken soup, I am very disappointed when I can only use it for just one meal! My ultimate record is using the same soup to make Chicken rice noodle soup, Pumpkin soup with coconut milk, Chicken curry and Hainanese chicken rice chilli, all within 2 days!
My broth has a hint of lemongrass, the sweetness of corn and turnips and just the right amount of delicious oiliness of the chicken! To entice you even further, I could say it was what my mother used to make for us on cold winter nights. Except that my mum can’t cook and it was always a constant sweltering 28º in Singapore! I am the mother of 3 kids though, one of whom is as old as many young food blogger/chefs out there, so he can say “Its my mother’s recipe which she used to make when I was ill…”
So here it is and even though, like most seasoned cooks, I don’t use measuring cups, weighing scales, or even a spoon to measure my ingredients, I will try my best to give some measurement quantities that don’t include a pinch of this and a gush of that!
Roasted Chicken Soup
- 1 whole soup chicken (In Germany they are the skinny versions of a chicken and are very tough, or you can also use a free range chicken)
- 5 whole garlics – slightly smashed with a knife
- 2 large onions
- 5 slices of fresh ginger
- 1 stalk lemongrass (cut off the root end before using)
- 1 fresh corn cob (this addition was introduced to me by my Singaporean friend Jean who lives in Ulm too. Until then I had never heard of it being put in soup, but it really adds a delicious sweetness to the soup!)
- 1/2 a large white carrot or 1 large turnip (kohlrabi in Germany)
- 1 celery stick
- 3l water (or more if your pot can hold it)
- 1/2 cup Soya Sauce
- 1 tablespoon Salt (I add 5 spice powder to my sea salt and keep it in a jar and I use it for all my cooking!) or more according to your taste
Extra ingredients to make One Stop Stock
- 500g pork bones
- 50g dried shrimp
- 25g dried anchovies
- Lightly salt your chicken before putting it in a pre-heated oven at 200ºC for 30 minutes. Here I used chicken parts as I couldn’t find any whole soup chicken. I added chestnuts in at the same time as I want to add it to my soup later on. ALWAYS remember to slit your chestnut skins a little before cooking them! I completely forgot this time and they EXPLODED in my oven and even all over my kitchen when I took them out. It was a real mess to clean up!
2. In the meantime, slice your onions and ginger and smash your garlics. Slice the white carrots into thick slices, wash your celery and corn cob.
3. Once the chicken is done, in the LARGEST pot you have, add the oil from the roasted chicken (about 3 tablespoons) and fry the onions, ginger and garlic for 7 minutes on medium heat. Don’t burn it!
4. Add the bruised lemongrass (see below. No this is not what normal lemongrass looks like, unless you have been in a fighting match over the last piece…).
4. Cut the chicken into large pieces and add it in the pot. Stir fry a little and add the salt and soya sauce.
5. Add 3l of boiling water, the white carrot, corn and celery.
6. Boil for at least 4h, adding water if needed.
That will give you a basic stock that you can just add noodles and sliced chicken or if you’re lazy like me, just throw in some minced pork.
The above soup had chestnuts in it, which was a surprising delicious discovery after I over cooked my chestnuts and they were hard as rock! I threw in the peeled chestnuts in my soup hoping it would soften them. Not only did it made them nice and soft again, but they added a nutty sweetness to my soup that was soooo good!
This dish I made by adding prawns and crabs (unfortunately I can only get frozen ones here) into my soup, but they’re delicious nevertheless!
It is also my base for a very special dish that is usually eaten during Chinese New Year, but I make it everytime I have guests but I don’t feel like cooking! We call it Steam Boat but Europeans or Americans call it Hot Pot. You put raw pork, beef, chicken, prawns, fish, tofu, rice noodles, chinese cabbage…out on the table with dipping sauce like chilli or soja sauce with seseme oil and the guests cook it themselves! The soup at the end of the meal is DELICIOUS! Its fun and very sociable and my guests leave thinking I’m such a good cook when they have been cooking all night! If you want to know more on how to prepare this, this link is very informative!
To make a One Stop Stock that you can use as a base for almost all your stir frys, add the extra ingredients listed above. For the pork bones, if you are lucky like me and have a Spanish husband who goes back to Spain very often during the year, you can get some bones that come off the Jambon Serrano or Iberico cured hams. That will really give a kick to your stock!
Before we devour it
Just one little bone is enough to spicen up a large pot of soup. If you’re not lucky like me, ordinary pork bones will do!
Dried shrimp and dried Anchovies
After boiling it all day, your stock should look creamy and smell heavenly! I freeze it in muffin trays as the portions are perfect for a stir fry for 4 people.
This stock is too strong to use as a soup base but it gives the extra “wham” in any Asian dish. You will find it in many of my recipes I will feature here.
Well I feel like making soup now, so let me know how yours turn out if you tried my recipe.