About a month has passed since my last post. Eeep! In some ways it’s hard to believe that it’s been so long since last writing, and in others it’s not. With packing and mailing boxes, selling things, and getting plane tickets sorted out for my cross the world move which happens in a few weeks, I’ve had little time for cooking, and even less for writing about what I’ve been making. There are a few yummy new things that I have made, and will be writing about soon. All the recipes are currently scrawled with different colored pencils in my kitchen notebook, the pages covered with flour and olive oil and other cooking battle scars, as a good cooking notebook should be.
This soup is one of my favorite things to cook and to eat. There is something that I find so satisfying and fulfilling about a good bowl of soup, and this coconut chicken soup meets my taste for a broth that’s a bit creamy, but not overly so, with some heartiness from the chicken, tofu and vegetables. I’ll make a huge pot, and eat it as leftovers for a week without the urge to change it any way by adding rice or noodles or anything else. It also has gochujang in it, which is one of my favorite Korean cooking staples (more about that later. I feel like gochujang deserves it’s own special post, as it holds such a place of high esteem in my heart), so there’s a bit of a kick to the soup as well.
The last of this week’s soup has just been finished, and I’m looking mournfully at the now empty pot. And now, the recipe:
Coconut Chicken Soup
2 6-8 oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts
lime juice (to taste)
dried basil (to taste)
14 oz coconut milk
1 ½ tablespoon gochujang (this gives a bit of a kick, but isn’t overly strong. Next time I’ll add about a 1/2 tablespoon)
1 ¾ cup vegetable stock (or water if you have no veggie or meat stock. If you’d like a creamier soup, then cut down on the stock or water by about a 1/4 cup. I used some more of the homemade veggie stock from the last soup post. Yum!)
1 ½ cups mixed mushrooms, chopped (I used white button and enoki mushrooms)
½ block tofu, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 medium onion, chopped
2 gloves garlic, minced
To Prepare the Chicken:
Place the chicken breasts onto tinfoil. Rub each side liberally with lime juice, basil, and black pepper. Wrap the chicken with the foil and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour, though longer is better.
A few minutes before taking the chicken out of the refrigerator (how long depends on your specific oven and how long it takes to heat evenly. I have a small toaster oven, so it doesn’t take long to heat up), preheat the oven to 175C.
Bake chicken (still in the foil) for 20-25 minutes until the chicken is done. It should not be pink inside, but don’t overcook, as you want the meat to be tender for the soup. To check for doneness, either use a chicken thermometer, or as I’ve done, cut it open and check the color.
While the chicken is cooking:
Chop the onions, mushrooms and tofu.
On medium low heat, combine the coconut milk and gochujang in a pot on the stove. Stir continuously to break the gochujang down into the milk, so that they are mixed well. The mixture should be a light orange color.
Add the garlic, onions, mushrooms, tofu and vegetable stock. Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.
When the chicken has finished cooking, cut into bite-sized pieces, and add to the soup. Season with salt, pepper, and lime juice, if desired. Simmer for an additional 10 minutes.
Serve and enjoy!