Our family loves Thai soup. So I’m always on the look out for recipes that taste like what I’ve been served at good Thai restaurants. In September, I found and tucked away a slow cooker chicken Thai soup recipe until December and winter arrived. It was an immediate hit for several reasons. First, because of the slow cooker, it was fairly easy to put together. Second, it is gluten, dairy, and soy-free so it required no modifications for our dietary needs. Third, it tasted delicious and received the coveted Hiram seal of approval. And fourth, it can be easily doubled or even tripled to create freezer meal.
My version of the recipe (which I couldn’t find on Parade’s Community Table recipe page) is slightly easier than the original and uses easier-to-find ingredients. Also, I through rice noodles into the mix to make the soup a hearty and complete meal.
Slow Cooker Chicken Thai Soup
2 lemons, zested
3 cups chicken or turkey broth
1/4 cup fish sauce (can use soy sauce)
1 (2 inch) piece ginger, peeled and grated
6 strips lime zest
1 thinly sliced shallot or 2 thinly sliced green onion
1/4 cup red curry paste
1 1/2 pounds chicken hindquarters
4 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 can unsweetened coconut milk
1 finely chopped large carrot
3 tablespoons lime juice
1 (16 ounce) package of Thai rice noodles
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon dried basil or 2 tablespoons chopped, fresh basil
1 thinly sliced green onion
1 red, yellow, or orange sweet pepper, thinly sliced
Preheat the slow cooker. Place lemon zest, broth, fish sauce (or soy sauce), ginger, lime zest, shallot or green onion, chicken hindquarters, and mushrooms in cooker. Cover and cook on high for 2 1/2 hours or on low for 5 hours.
Remove chicken from cooker and cool before picking meat off the bones. Then put it back in the cooker.*
Add coconut milk, chopped carrot, and red curry paste. Cook on high for 30 minutes longer or for 1 hour on low.
20 minutes before serving, prepare the Thai noodles according to package directions. Place them in a large bowl.
Right before serving, stir in lime juice, cilantro, basil, and green onion.
To serve, place rice noodles in the bottom of each soup bowl. Then ladle soup onto the noodles. Garnish with chopped cilantro and sliced green onions, along with the sweet pepper slices and add some red pepper flakes for heat if that’s your jam.
*If making freezer meals, allow this mixture to cool and place in labeled gallon zipper bags. Proceed with the rest of the recipe when you serve the freezer meal.
Life around here is getting into a making-it-through-fall-with-1-broken-foot-and-a-pregnant-woman groove. Basically, that means we’re always on the hunt for recipes that are tasty, nutritious, easy, and economical. Now that we’ve become one of “those families” with a variety of food allergies–dairy for Jolene, Anne, and Kailen, soy (for sure) and gluten (perhaps) for Tad–the recipes also need to be adaptable to those restrictions.
Today’s recipe for beef ragu was found in a free magazines distributed by Hy-Vee, a regional grocery store chain. Made in a slow cooker, it meets the “easy” requirement. The main ingredients listed were nutritious, inexpensive ones like tomatoes and carrots. I substituted an inexpensive chuck roast for the flank steak to make it even more economical. Four of the five of us thought it was mighty tasty. The Man of Steel warmed up to the flavors once he, as our token adult dairy eater, sprinkled it with parmeseon cheese. The only modification made was preparing gluten-free noodles for Tad.
The only fail of the night was when the cook forgot to take a picture before she started eating. But I managed to prepare the entire meal and set the table with no help (other than asking someone else to drain the noodles) despite a broken foot, so I’m feeling good. We all agreed this recipe is a keeper that can be doubled or tripled to make freezer meals. So it’ll hit our table again, and I’ll snap a picture then. In the meantime, here’s the recipe:
Slow-Cooker Beef Ragu
1 1/2 pounds chuck steak
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced Italian-style tomatoes with onion and garlic
1/4 cup water
2 medium carrots, chopped
6 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
3 tablespoons tomato paste
12 oz. wide egg noodles, cooked and drained
Cut chuck roast into chunks and place in slow cooker. Add tomatoes, water, garlic, carrots, bay leaves, and Italian seasoning. Stir well. Cover and set cooker on low for 5-6 hours. Discard bay leaves and stir in tomato paste. Serve over cooked noodles and enjoy!
Sharing the kitchen with my daughter and her family has many advantages. One of the greatest advantages is that I am in charge of only half the meals. Another is the opportunity to learn new recipes from the cook who’s in charge of the other half of the meals. Here’s her take on chicken salad. I never would have guessed how much cauliflower can add to this simple dish.
Anne’s Chicken Salad
2 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
1/2 large onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped fine
4 large pickle spears, chopped
1 small head cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 cup mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste
Saute cauliflower in olive oil until some pieces begin to brown. Remove from heat.
Combine chicken, onion, celery, pickles, and cauliflower in a large bowl. Add mayonnaise 1/4 cup at a time until it reaches the consistency you like. Add salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate 2-4 hours before serving with your favorite bread or on a bed of lettuce.
I’ve been making chicken broth for years by boiling the chicken carcass in a big stock pot. But my daughter recently showed me how to make very flavorful broth in a slow cooker overnight. What could be simpler? Not much as this recipe shows, which works equally well with turkey.
Slow Cooker Chicken Broth
Place the carcass of a roasted or slow cooked chicken carcass, including skin and bones, in the slow cooker. Add pan juices and brown bits scraped from the bottom of the roasting pan. Fill the slow cooker with water. Throw in an onion (quartered), three stalks of celery cut into 3 inch lengths (include the leaves), and 6 garlic cloves (halved). It will look a little gross.
Put the lid on the pot, turn it on low and let it cook overnight. In the morning, run the contents of the slow cooker through a strainer into two large bowls. Allow the broth to cool. Pour into pint freezer bags. Seal and lay the bags flat on cookie sheets. Place cookie sheets in freezer until the broth is solid. Remove bags from cookie sheets, stack and keep in freezer until needed. Makes 8–10 pints of broth.
Soup season will soon be over. But while it lasts, this recipe is one to try before warm weather hits. Especially if you love Thai food. This recipe is my version of one from the Elana’s Pantry website.
This recipe is easy, dairy-free, gluten-free, and bursting with flavor. It makes a big batch. That’s good because The Man of Steel and I would have quibbled over the leftovers otherwise. Needless to say, this version of Thai soup received the Hiram Coveted Seal of Approval. Next time, I may add some red pepper flakes to add a bit more heat.
Thai Chicken Soup
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 bunch green onion, chopped
- 8 sprigs cilantro, chopped
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 28 ounces coconut
- ½ pound crimini mushrooms
- 1 head broccoli
- 1 pound chicken breasts skinless-boneless, halved lengthwise, sliced on bias, cut into ⅛ inch thick pieces
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 teaspoons red curry paste
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- ½ cup cilantro, minced
- Warm oil in a large saucepan over medium heat
- Add half of the green onions and cilantro, stirring frequently until softened, about 5 minutes
- Stir in stock and coconut milk and bring to a simmer
- Pour broth through a fine mesh strainer and discard solids (green onions and cilantro)
- Return broth to saucepan
- Reduce heat to medium, add mushrooms and broccoli and cook until tender, about 5 minutes
- Add chicken and cook, stirring constantly, until no longer pink
- Combine lime juice, curry paste and fish sauce in a small bowl then stir into soup
- Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with cilantro, chilies and scallions