This is one that I make whenever Hill or I are feeling under the weather or generally in need of some clean simple food. (served here with some spinach salad and some bok choy with black bean sauce)
Our local super market has packages of murray’s free range chicken soup bones. It’s just all the stuff that’s left when they butcher up the whole chickens to turn them into boneless/skinless breasts and etc.. 49 cents a pound or something, and perfect for making stock. You can also do it with a quartered up whole chicken, but you’ll end up with quite a lot more meat than you need (no problem! Save it to make some flautas or something!)
- Thai Chile
- Jasmine Rice
Put a little oil in the bottom of a nice big dutch oven and heat over medium high heat. Toss in your bits of chicken and lightly pan roast them for a few minutes. Add a couple of onions cut into sixths, two or three large carrots peeled and cut into inch long pieces, 3 or 4 big stalks of celery also cut into inches. Add a few whole garlic cloves and a couple of big chunks of peeled ginger, and one or two thai chiles cut in half lengthwise. Keep everything moving until it starts to release a nice smell. Add water to cover. If you have water heating in a kettle in the meantime, it’ll save you a lot of time bringing everything up to a boil. Once the whole mess is boiling, reduce the heat to a low low simmer.. practically just a steep! It may take a while to get the heat just right, but it’s my feeling that the stock ends up much better if you never boil it HARD. Just hot enough that the surface ripples a little. Skim the scum off the top (once usually does it! but you may have to skim again later).
Leave it! Let it sit for an hour and a half or so. Use this method to make chicken stock anytime you need it. If you leave out the ginger and thai chile, you’ll have a very neutral and versatile stock.
In the mean time, make a pot of jasmine, or other long grain white rice (not basmati! that’ll just taste weird).
Peel and thinly slice an onion.
Peel and thinly slice some garlic cloves (nice thin discs).
Peel and julienne some ginger.
Coarsely chop scallions.
When the stock is done, strain it into a big bowl using a colander (don’t make the mistake of straining it through the colander and straight down the drain!!! This is easier to do than you think! Usually you keep what goes in the colander instead of what goes through it, and force of habit is strong!!!). When the chicken bones have cooled enough, pick off the meat and reserve. Toss everything else! The good stuff is all in the stock
You’re ready to assemble!
Back in the Dutch oven, heat a little oil (vegetable oil, and a little splash of toasted sesame). Toss in garlic and ginger followed quickly by the sliced onion. Sweat these for just a few moments and then add the chicken. Add the stock and soy sauce to taste, bring it all up to heat, and then just let it sit for 15 minutes or so.
Prepare bowls with rice and chopped scallion. Ladle soup over the top and eat!