Soups

Tom kha - Thai coconut soup with asparagus

It’s asparagus season so get ready for a GLUT (ok maybe two or three) asparagus recipes from me… starting with this lovely coconut soup.

This is enough for one, or for two if you’re making it as part of a multi-dish meal.

If you’re serving this with rice, make the rice first and leave it to keep warm and fluffy while you make the soup.

Take a good handful of asparagus spears and snap the woody ends off.

I love that you can’t really judge where the right point would be to cut them off but instead just bend them back and where they naturally want to snap is of course is the exact right place for them to snap (I feel there’s a life lesson in here somewhere too).

Slice the asparagus spears into smaller lengths and put into a bowl with about a quarter of a white onion and a few mushrooms, washed and chopped.

So far, our ingredients have been:

8 or so asparagus stalks

1/4 white onion

3-4 mushrooms

And we’ll also need:

1 red birds eye chilli, diced

1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and cut into slices

1 stalk of lemongrass, outer woody layers removed, the bottom and top inch or so cut off and then sliced into rounds

a few kaffir lime leaves, torn from the stalk and then torn again into smaller pieces

half a tin of coconut cream plus half a tin of water (or use coconut milk)

four cherry tomatoes, halved (or a couple of larger tomatoes, cut into chunks)

a pinch of sugar

a dash of fish sauce

a handful of coriander leaves, chopped

half a lime

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Get the chilli, ginger, lemongrass and lime leaves together so it’s ready to add to the soup and then put the coconut cream and water into a pan and gently bring to a simmer.

I think it’s good to be gentle with the coconut milk mixture so let it breathe and take its time.

When it’s just about simmering, add the aromatics (the chilli, ginger, lemongrass and lime leaves), stir and again just wait until it comes back to that almost-simmer.

Then tip in the vegetables, stir and bring to a proper gentle simmer - and cook for five minutes.

Add the tomatoes, sugar and fish sauce and stir and cook on a gentle simmer for another five minutes.

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Taste and check if you want to add any more sugar or fish sauce and if it tastes good add the fresh coriander and squeeze in the juice of half a lime, stir and simmer for another minute.

Ladle into a bowl and serve with some rice.

I’ll leave you with a question …

Do you add your soup to the rice or the rice to your soup?!

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Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork

Comfort food extraordinaire!

Perfect, perfect perfect for a grey, rainy winter London day’s brunch.

Quantities are up to you really - I used one sheet of dried vermicelli noodles and one chicken breast for two, but hey - sometime’s I’m hungrier than others and would have eaten it all to myself.

So just choose how much looks and feels right to you. It’s all going to be good (and taste delicious).

For two today, I used:

1 sheet of dried rice vermicelli noodles, soaked in hot water (bring to the boil, add noodles, remove from heat) for 5 minutes

a few dried porcini mushroom, also soaked in hot water until needed - I used a ladleful of the water from the saucepan that the noodles were soaking in

pork mince, about 200 - 250g

a handful of fresh coriander leaves

white pepper

1 red birds eye chilli

1 clove of garlic

1 piece of ginger

cooking oil - I like to use a spray oil

water

about 1/3 of a Knorr chicken stock cube

fish sauce

light soy sauce

Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork
Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork

Once the noodles have soaked for about five minutes, drain, rinse with cold water and keep to one side to add at the end.

Scrunch the pork mince with about half the coriander leaves, chopped finely, and about 1/4 teaspoon white pepper and then - using wet hands - shape into small meatballs and set aside.

Mince the chilli and garlic, peel the ginger and either cut into slices or grate finely (I had slices today but tried grating it the next time and preferred that as it’s a stronger ginger flavour).

Also remove the mushrooms from their liquid (keep the liquid!) and cut into small pieces.

Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork
Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork

Put a non-stick over a medium heat with a little cooking oil (I used 20 sprays of my spray oil) and add the chilli and garlic. Add a splash of water too to stop it from sticking and then add the meatballs and cook, stirring, so they are sealed on all sides - add another splash of water if needed.

Pour in enough water to make whatever quantity of soup you want and bring to the boil.

Reduce to a simmer and throw in the ginger, crumble in the piece of stock cube and add a tablespoon of the reserved mushroom water (and now discard the rest). Also add a good slosh each of light soy sauce and of fish sauce.

Simmer until the pork is cooked - probably 6-8 minutes but do pull one of the meatballs apart to check.

Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork
Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork

Throw in the noodles and cook for another minute, stirring, to combine and ensure it’s all heated through.

That’s it! Serve topped with the rest of the fresh chopped coriander, if liked.

This is my current favourite warming winter dish - I hope you like it too.

Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork
Rachel Redlaw: Vermicelli noodle soup with minced pork


You might also like …

Chilli, lime + coconut chicken (or mushroom)

This one came about by accident ... on an evening when I'd been planning to make my quick beef rendang, but then realised I was missing several ingredients including, pretty crucially, the steak.

Also, I didn't have any lemongrass, but did have lime leave so decided to play up the lime flavour and see what I could make.

It's now a favourite, made for itself.

I think it would work well with mushrooms in place of the chicken for a vegetarian version.

Cook some rice while you prepare the ingredients, and it can then sit and steam while you cook the curry.

I made this just for me, so portions are for one, but it's easy to scale up and not an exact science anyway really, more about what you've got in, how hungry you are, and what tastes good!

But I used:

a small piece of ginger, peeled and grated

1/2 a teaspoon turmeric powder (when I first made this, I didn't have any, so just leave it out if you don't either)

a couple of lime leaves, torn from the stalks and chopped into very small pieces (if you don't have lime leaves try the zest of a lime)

1 clove garlic, peeled and minced

1-2 red birds eye chillies (depending on your taste - I like it spicy!), finely sliced

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

2 whole cloves, or 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 onion, peeled and sliced

1 small chicken breast

2 teaspoons cooking oil or use a spray oil

1/2 tin coconut milk (or like me, find a cute mini-tin!)

1 stick of cinnamon, or 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 - 1 juicy lime (to your taste - I like lots of lime)

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

a few cherry tomatoes, halved

Thai sweet basil, if you have it, or if not perhaps a small handful of baby spinach leaves (or just leave this out)

Put the ginger, turmeric, lime leaves, garlic, chillies, coriander, cumin and cloves into a mortar, add a splash of water and use a pestle or rolling pin to pound into a beautiful paste.

Slice the onion and the chicken so they're ready to go.

Add the oil to a non-stick pan and when hot tip in the spice mixture so it sizzles.

Stir for maybe 30 seconds to a minute - until it releases that beautiful fragrance - and add another little splash of water if you think it needs it.

Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken
Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken

Then add the onions and chicken - and another splash of water - and cook, stirring often, until the chicken has sealed  - about three minutes.

Tip in the coconut milk then add the cinnamon, lime juice, sugar and salt.

Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken
Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken

Stir to mix and then simmer for ten minutes, stirring regularly, then add the tomatoes and cook for another five minutes.

Throw in the Thai basil or spinach, if using, remove from the heat and stir in to wilt.

Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken
Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken

Serve with rice and a couple of slices of a milder red chilli - I just do this because it looks nice and because I love chilli, so don't add it if you don't want to!

If I don't have the Thai basil or spinach, I might also top with some fresh chopped coriander leaves, but I know a lot of people don't like coriander, so this is only if you like it of course!

Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken
Rachel Redlaw chilli lime coconut chicken

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Noodle soup with seafood

Yummy! This was perfect yesterday for weekend brunch on a freezing, icy but sunny day.

So many good things in this one, and it IS simple, although it might look like a long list of ingredients.

Read it through to get a sense of the simplicity.

Quantities are kind of up to you and what you feel like, but for two I used this.

I made a paste with the pestle and mortar, gently pounding (CAN you 'gently' pound? Well, I can when I'm trying not to get the food on my white sweater ha!):

a piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

a clove of garlic, peeled and minced

a chopped red chilli

a couple of kaffir line leaves (stalks removed)

a stick of lemongrass (only the middle part, outer woody layers removed, minced)

1 scant tablespoon each of runny honey, light soy sauce, fish sauce, toasted sesame oil

Then 3/4 of this paste went into a pan of boiling water along with a Knorr chicken stock cube, and the other 1/4 into a bowl to marinade squid and prawns and mushrooms.

Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood
Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood
Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood

You could mix it up of course - try chicken instead, add scallops, have just all sorts of different mushrooms.

Cook the seafood on a hot griddle pan or in a non-stick frying pan - you could of course just add to the soup if you want to keep it really simple but I love this charred griddled seafood.

I added another squeeze of runny honey over the seafood in the last minute or so.

Add lots of diced vegetables to the broth along with a nest of rice noodles (thin ones or wider ones, both work!) for a couple of minutes.

Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood
Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood
Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood
Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood

Finish with a squeeze of lime and a dash more soy or fish sauce as needed - to taste.

Share the noodles into two bowls, ladle over the soup and vegetables, top with seafood, griddled mushrooms or meat.

Rachel Redlaw noodle soup with seafood

This is one that once you've made it you can just play with, adapting to whatever you feel like and whatever you have in the fridge and cupboard.

It was perfect for a frosty morning here in London, lots of warming flavours with the chilli, garlic and ginger, and then the rousing citrus lemongrass and lime juice, alongside comforting broth and noodles.



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Another green soup

Yeah I know .. it IS a bit weird! 

Just a couple of weeks ago I made my first ever, well first actually called by that name, GREEN SOUP - and it was so, so good.

And then I visited my mum that weekend and was looking through her recipe book - as I often do - as it has so many good recipes from such a long time ago, hand written and some torn from old newspapers ... and I found a recipe for 'green soup'.

It was just one of those coincidences where you can't NOT see where it goes - and so today I made her green soup recipe too.

In all honesty, I preferred the first green soup I made, but this one is a very good soup too.

I think it probably shows its age - there are of course fashions in flavours and trends in textures.

That's intriguing too .. yes it's a more filling soup as it includes potatoes and peas .. but it also has flavours and ingredients that were more unusual back then - it has ground coriander and cumin, a little fresh green chilli and roasted cumin seeds (I just dry toasted in a pan and then ground).

But hey, I'll DEFINITELY be making it again - a super-simple, nourishing, good, simple and filling soup ... er, YES.

Here's what you need for maybe four smaller bowls or two greedy people - or by greedy I mean a huge bowl each for a main course and no need for bread with it either (cos it's already got potato in the soup)!


1 medium-large potato, peeled and diced

1 medium onion, peeled and diced

Rachel Redlaw green pea and potato soup

1.25 litres chicken - or vegetable stock - to be honest I just throw the stock cube in and add the water separately but you can make up the stock first if you prefer

a nice cube of fresh ginger, peeled 

1 teaspoon ground coriander 

2 teaspoons ground cumin

a good handful fresh coriander leaves, chopped

1 fresh green chilli, diced

1/2 teaspoon salt

approx 400g fresh or frozen peas

the juice of half a lemon

1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds, roasted and ground

small pot of natural yogurt


Into a big saucepan put the potato, onion, stock, ginger and spices and bring to the boil then simmer for 30 minutes.

Fish out that piece of ginger and discard.

Add the fresh coriander, chilli, salt, peas, lemon juice and roasted cumin powder.

Bring back to the boil and simmer for three minutes until the peas are soft.

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Rachel Redlaw green pea and potato soup

Pour it all into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.

Tip back into the saucepan, season with salt and pepper to taste, tip in the pot of yogurt and bring back to a simmer.

Once at a simmer, remove from heat and serve - you could add a swirl of yogurt, some extra black pepper or fresh coriander to garnish if liked.

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Rachel Redlaw green pea and potato soup

Green soup

Yep, like a green smoothie but for winter!

Possibly the most healthful, nourishing, restorative thing you can make - and delicious too. 

I found this recipe on Adriene Mishler's site - she of Yoga with Adriene that I love so much and can't stop going on about - I love my almost-daily yoga practice and how it makes me feel.

Her 31-day yoga challenge is a great place to start if you want to try making yoga a part of your life too.

But enough yoga, and back to the soup.

I simplified the recipe slightly and added a spoon of creamy Greek yogurt - but you could just leave this out of course.

This is a seriously good soup - it sounded just what I needed when I woke up with swollen glands and a sore throat - and it was ... but I wasn't expecting it to be so utterly delicious too. 

Definitely a new favourite for me!

As you'll need a food processor (or blender) to blend the soup at the end, you might as well use it to chop everything and make this super-fast to prepare too.

No need to wash it in between chopping the onion and the vegetables, and then I just gave it a quick rinse in cold water before using to blend the finished soup.

Here's the ingredients for a good big pan of soup ... 

1 onion

a teaspoon of light olive oil or other cooking oil

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1 large courgette

3 stalks of celery

Water, freshly boiled from the kettle

1 vegetable stock cube

1-1.5 teaspoons white pepper (I love white pepper!)

a good handful of broccoli - and another of asparagus

2 big handfuls of spinach leaves or kale, something dark green and leafy anyway

Salt, to taste


Put the kettle on to boil and get all the ingredients ready.

Whizz the onion in the food processor then put straight into a large saucepan with the cooking oil and garlic and cook over a low heat until it's softened - add a splash of water too and make sure it doesn't stick.

This will take probably between 5-10 minutes, so while it's cooking, chop the courgette and celery together in the food processor and then add to the softened onion and garlic mixture, and stir together.

Rachel Redlaw green soup
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Rachel Redlaw green soup

Add a ladleful of water and crumble in the stock cube and the white pepper and mix it all in.

Then whizz up the broccoli and asparagus and add this too and cook for a minute.

Rachel Redlaw green soup
Rachel Redlaw green soup
Rachel Redlaw green soup

Throw in the spinach leaves and stir until wilted, then add as much water as you want to make your soup plus a tablespoon of natural or Greek yogurt (if using).

Simmer for ten minutes then remove from heat and cool slightly before blending very smooth.

Rachel Redlaw green soup
Rachel Redlaw green soup
Rachel Redlaw green soup

Return to the pan to re-heat gently and add salt to taste (I also added a little more yogurt, since the pot was open!).

Serve with another dollop of yogurt if liked, and with a chunk of good crusty bread, or with a salad - as you choose.

Rachel Redlaw green soup
Rachel Redlaw green soup
Rachel Redlaw green soup


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Happiness soup

Looking through her old recipe book last weekend for my mum's original lentil soup recipe (couldn't find it!), I found a recipe for Savoury Slice, something forgotten from my childhood and from my packed lunches, which I couldn't resist making again.

I also found a recipe for this 'Happiness Soup' written into the book in one of my sister's handwriting - none of us, including my mum, have ever made this as far as I know!

But how can I resist a recipe for 'Happiness Soup'? 

So I made it yesterday for lunch for my dad, my step-mum and me - and it was really good.

(There was also leftover pumpkin soup that my dad had made the day before - which I tried and, having claimed to hate pumpkin soup - well, I was wrong! I'll be sharing his pumpkin soup recipe soon too!).

Happiness soup is simple and tasty and perfect for lunch - it has rice in it so you won't need to fill up on bread either.

Here's what you mean to make enough for four people, but of course adapt according to the size of the courgettes, etc that you have! It doesn't need specific measures so don't be worried to change the measurements a bit.

3 medium - large courgettes

zest and juice of 1.5 lemons

3 tablespoons light olive oil (or other cooking oil)

1.5 teaspoon turmeric

1.2 teaspoon chilli powder

1.5 litre chicken (or vegetable) stock

120g basmati (or long grain) rice

salt and pepper to season

sliced chilli or fresh herbs to garnish (if liked)

Rachel Redlaw happiness soup
Rachel Redlaw happiness soup

Peel and finely dice the courgettes and put into a big saucepan with the lemon zest and oil.

Fry gently until softened, stirring often, which will take probably around eight minutes or so.

Rachel Redlaw happiness soup
Rachel Redlaw happiness soup

Add the lemon juice, stock, turmeric, chilli powder and rice and simmer for 15 minutes, partially covered.

Rachel Redlaw happiness soup
Rachel Redlaw happiness soup

Remove the lid, season and simmer again for another five minutes.

Check that it's all cooked through - cook a little longer if you want the rice softer etc of course.

Serve warm with slices of chilli or perhaps some fresh herbs to garnish.

Rachel Redlaw happiness soup
Rachel Redlaw happiness soup

Such a lovely autumnal colour and so healthy and nourishing too. 

A really good, happy soup indeed.



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Lovely lentil soup

My mum used to make the most delicious lentil soup.

It came into my mind recently - thinking about this soup she used to make maybe 27 years ago ... it was garlicky and yummy and bubbling away on the AGA with French bread warming in the oven to have with it.

I forgot to look for the recipe in her great big falling-apart book of written recipes and tucked in hand-written ones from others and yet more torn from magazines and newspapers too.

Next time I'm there and I remember, I'll look for it, but I wanted to make something like it today, and so made this.

My version will definitely be quicker as I'm using a tin of green lentils and I know my mum would have used red lentils from the jar, dried red lentils that would have needed soaking overnight before cooking for a long time.

So, here's my super-simple version - and I find this so nurturing, nourishing, comforting and all round GOOD at this time of year, when the leaves are falling and the nights drawing in.

And here's what you'll need to make two bowlfuls (either two bowls for one, or one each for two people - cook's choice!).

1 smallish brown onion

1 medium carrot

1 stick of celery 

2-3 cloves of garlic (mine were small so I had three)

cooking oil (I use a spray oil like THIS one)

tin (265g) of green lentils, drained and rinsed in cold water

500ml vegetable stock

2 bay leaves

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

salt and pepper to taste

ideas to garnish to to serve: crispy bacon pieces, Greek yogurt, slices of red chilli, fresh chopped parsley leaves, more black pepper

Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup
Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup

You want to chop the onion, carrot and celery very finely - the easiest way is to use a food processor.

Then finely chop the garlic and add to the other vegetables.

Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup
Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup
Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup

Put a little oil (I use 20 sprays of my spray cooking oil) into a saucepan, add the vegetables and cook over a low heat for a couple of minutes, stirring all the time so it doesn't stick or burn - add a tiny splash of water if it does look like it will.

Then add the lentils, vegetable stock and herbs, stir and bring to the boil.

Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup
Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup

Add a lid (slightly ajar), reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Stir and check to see if it needs a little more water, and then cover and simmer again for another 15 minutes.

At the end of this time, remove the lid, stir again, add a little more water if it needs it - or you like a thinner soup - and simmer again on the lowest heat for a final 15 minutes. 

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

You can then serve it as it is or blend it first. I prefer it blended and I also like to add a spoonful of yogurt at this stage.

Garnish with whatever you choose! I had another dollop of Greek yogurt, a couple of slices of red chilli and a sprinkling of freshly ground black pepper.

Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup
Rachel Redlaw lovely lentil soup

Serve as it is or make more of a meal with it by having with some warm crusty baguette and a green salad too.


OK! I need to make this again as my mum said her savoury secret was adding 1/4 - 1/5 teaspoon Marmite to the soup! 



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Coconut cauliflower chicken/mushroom soup

Simple, quick and delicious - my favourite sort of recipe!

And especially on a rainy grey day, I love the sort of soothing-ness that comes from creamy coconut matched with a little spice, and the cauliflower is the perfect texture - soft but with a little bite.

I used chicken stock and some cooked chicken, but it's a lovely vegetarian/vegan recipe made with vegetable stock and mushrooms instead.


For two bowls, you'll need

1 small head of cauliflower, chopped into florets

a big handful of mushrooms, cleaned and sliced and/or some cooked chicken, cut into small pieces

300ml stock - I used half a Knorr chicken stock cube, but vegetable is good too 

200ml (half a tin) coconut milk

1 garlic clove, squashed and finely chopped (you can leave this out though, I think I might try it without next time I make it)

1 couple of lime leaves, crumpled and torn to release the scent would be perfect - but I didn't have any so used the zest of one lime

a piece of ginger, probably an inch or so, peeled and grated

If you have a stalk of lemongrass (I didn't), add it! Just remove the outer tough layers, give it a bash with a rolling pin and throw it in 

2 tablespoons light soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1-2 red bird eye chillies, quantity to your own taste, sliced

the juice of half a lime

coriander leaves to serve (if liked)


Prepare the vegetables and chicken (if using) so they're ready to add later.

Then put the stock, coconut milk, garlic (if using), lime leaves or lime zest, ginger, lemongrass (if using), soy sauce and sugar plus the cauliflower, mushrooms and/or chicken into a saucepan and gently heat to bring to the boil.

Rachel Redlaw coconut cauliflower soup
Rachel Redlaw coconut cauliflower soup

Simmer for 5-10 minutes until the cauliflower is soft but a little al dente (definitely not mush!) and remove from heat.

Stir in the chillies and lime juice and serve with coriander, if liked - I wish I'd had some as think it would have looked prettier with some greenery on there!

Rachel Redlaw coconut cauliflower soup

Oh, you could remove any lime leaves and lemongrass before serving if you want - or just take them out when you come to them in the bowl ...

So simple and so good.



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1 roast chicken / 5 recipes / 7 meals

Food waste. Shocking stats - the latest numbers I remember are that here in the UK alone we throw away 5,000 chickens and over 1m sausages every single day.  Plus around 4m apples and potatoes - again every single day.

Whatever we can do individually to combat this, no matter how seemingly small, has got to be worth doing. 

Not buying too much in the first place is easiest, buying more food fresh as it's needed. Planning ahead for the week.  

And, of course, using up leftovers.  

Leftover rice can become a kao pad.  Risotto turns into Arancini (stuffed rice balls), and stale bread into that lovely Italian salad, Panzanella.  So many good things to make through being aware of not wasting food. 

I decided to see how many meals I could make from one roast chicken, and it was more than I'd expected! There was probably a little less meat at each meal than I would usually serve, but that's no bad thing and something I'd like to consciously continue to do.

Last weekend's roast chicken started off being cooked in my remoska.  I love my remoska - I asked for it as a birthday present over ten years' ago and it makes the best roast chicken and the best jacket potatoes.  I think it's because it's a small space so it really steams beautifully as it cooks.  Whatever the reason, chicken is incredibly moist and the skin perfectly crispy.  I also use it for one-pot dishes like a savoury rice or stews - in fact I feel a whole remoska post of its own coming on one day soon!   

But back to the roast chicken ...  


Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

 

 

 

 

 

 

I mixed up some lemon/thyme salt that was in the cupboard with butter and rubbed that under the skin of the chicken (careful not to tear the skin) and put a couple of squashed garlic cloves (no need to remove the skins) in the cavity along with a quartered lemon, after squeezing the juice over the bird.  

I also massaged it with a little olive oil.  And then cooked for an hour and a half or so.

 

Sorry about the horribly unappetising photo!

I totally forgot to take any when it was cooked, or looking delicious with a colourful fresh salad - but I did want to show how snugly it fits in the remoska which is why it cooks it so beautifully.

 
Roast chicken five ways Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai
 

We had slices of hot chicken with a big couscous salad - couscous cooked and cooled with cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, chopped fresh mint and parsley leaves, a little olive oil, black pepper and lots of lemon juice.

Roast chicken + couscous salad: for two


Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

 

 

 

 

 

I just put the whole board of leftovers in the fridge that night and the next day made myself a noodle soup for lunch, using a packet of instant noodles.

Put the kettle on so you'll have boiling water when you need it.  

Then just stir fried a squashed and chopped garlic clove and a chopped chilli in a little oil for a few seconds until it smells good.

 

Add the noodles, their seasoning packet and a small pinch of sugar, some sliced spring onions plus boiling water (I just put in as much as I think I want depending on if I want it soupy or not, rather than measuring it out).  

Simmer for a few minutes until the noodles are done and just at the end throw in some spinach leaves or pak choi and coriander (if liked). 

Roast chicken five ways Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

Chicken noodle soup: for one


Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That evening, I needed something just for me, so cooked some rice and made my favourite fakeaway, a chicken jalfrezi.  

 

I changed the recipe a little as I was using cooked chicken so added it later on in the timings.

 
Friday night fakeaway jalfrezi Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai
 

Chicken curry: for one


Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

 

 

 

 

 

Next, time to make a very simple stock.

I'm a bit lazy when it comes to stock making and don't spend ages getting every scrap of meat off.  I tend to just stick the whole carcass and all the meat and bits straight into a big pan.

Add one roughly chopped onion, carrot and celery stick, a few black peppercorns and a couple of bay leaves and then cover with water.

 

Bring to the boil, skim off any scummy bits that have risen to the surface, and then simmer very gently for an hour or two. 

Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai
Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

I then turned off the heat and left the stock overnight on the hob with a lid on it as it was late and I wanted to get to bed! 


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The next day, the stock had become very gelatinous so I warmed the whole thing for a few minutes on the hob until it was liquid again, then strained.  Before throwing away the bits in the strainer though, I picked out all the meat I could and threw it back in the liquid.

To make my Thai-influenced soup, I started with sweating half a chopped onion and a clove of garlic in a big pan - oh and one chopped chilli too!

 

When these were soft, I poured in the stock liquid, added half a chicken Knorr stock cube and some more boiling water - to increase the volume to what's needed.  If you don't need more, you might not need to add the extra stock cube too.

Once this comes to a simmer, I added cooked rice, some spring onion, a little dash of fish sauce and one of soy and some black pepper.  Taste and taste and see what you think!

I'd meant to add a squeeze of lime juice ... but forgot .. 

Served in bowls with coriander leaves (just omit if you don't like coriander; I know a lot of people don't) and some sliced red chilli.

Roast chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

Kao tom gai / chicken rice soup: for two


Roast Chicken Rachel Redlaw The Tiniest Thai

 

 

 

 

 

 

There was only a little left in the pan, after we'd gone back for seconds (that's why it's worth adding the extra water and a bit of stock cube) ... and normally, I might well have thrown it away.

But it looked enough for a bowlful and it is so cold at the moment - I thought it would make a good and nourishing breakfast.  

 

So in the morning, I just turned the gas on under the kettle for tea, and the gas under the soup pan to heat the chicken rice soup.

Do make sure it boils and heats through thoroughly.

I cracked an egg into a bowl and ladled the boiling soup on top, which on stirring, lightly cooked the egg.  I added coriander leaves and some sliced chilli and that was that.

Chicken rice soup Rachel Redalw The Tiniest Thai
Chicken rice soup Rachel Redalw The Tiniest Thai
Chicken rice soup Rachel Redalw The Tiniest Thai

Very simple and very good. Especially on a very cold morning! 

Rice soup for breakfast: for one


So, my one roast chicken made made five recipes (roast, noodles, curry, stock, soup) and seven meals.

(Oh, and Tiny Dog loves chicken and had a little piece chopped in with his biscuits for five meals too!)

Would love to know your favourite leftover recipes too so do reply in the comments! 



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Viktoria's paprika potatoes / paprikas krumpli

This is a sort-of-soup that's almost a stew.  It's simple and very tasty. Filling and good value.

I love potatoes so I really liked this! 

The recipe was shared with me by my friend Viktoria and she told me that during her childhood in Hungary it was traditional to eat two courses at main meals, usually starting with a soup - often a vegetable broth or sometimes something more substantial like this.

It's made with a Hungarian dried sausage not available over here, so Viktoria suggested using chorizo or - if you prefer fresh sausage - a Polish sausage that will be more readily available would be similar.

When I told another Hungarian friend that I was making this dish she said her family make it with frankfurters - I might try those next time I make it.  

I found that the chorizo was soft as it's added at the same time as the water - this is the correct texture but it was an unusual texture for my palate.  

When I make this again (and I will), I might try frying the sausage with the onion and see how that works. 

For two, I used:    

two potatoes, peeled and diced

one onion

cooking oil

about 1/2 tablespoon sweet paprika (Hungarian if you can get it, or spicy paprika if you prefer) 

a piece of dry sausage or frankfurter (just use however much you like!) 

a couple of bay leaves (I used dried but I'd like to try it with fresh too)

salt and black pepper

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes

Peel, wash and dice the potatoes, and peel and chop the onion finely.

Heat a tablespoon or so of oil in a saucepan and saute the onion until soft. 

Add the paprika and mix in quickly as you don't want the paprika to burn and taste bitter.

 
The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes
 

Now tip in the diced potatoes, stir to mix and then add enough water to cover.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes
The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes

Slice and add the sausage plus a couple of bay leaves and a little salt and pepper (you can adjust to taste when it's cooked and do bear in mind that the sausage is quite salty.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes
The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes

Cook until potatoes are cooked, around 15 minutes.  I deliberately overcooked them a little as I'm with Viktoria on this one and prefer them quite soft in this sort of stew/soup. 

Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve!

So simple and really good. 

 
The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder Viktoria's paprika potatoes
 

She also shared with me a traditional dish for the second course to follow the paprikas krumpli and as soon as I've made it, I'll add it here too.

In the meantime, let me know what you think of the paprika potatoes! 


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Tom yum goong - hot sour soup with prawns

There are so many great tom yum pastes readily available that you don't really have to make your own ... except that it is so easy, so lovely and just smells so good!  Lime leaves and lemongrass are two of my very favourite scents  - I sometimes even use a dab of lemongrass essential oil in place of perfume.

The ingredients might sound exotic but I found them all at Sainsbury's - although I know I'm lucky to have a big store close by.   You also need some chilli paste in oil, some nam pao prik, which is easy to make.

So, now to make this lovely traditional clear, hot, sour soup with prawns. As ever quantities aren't exact, but for one big bowl of soup, or for two less greedy/hungry people, you'll need:

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

cooked rice, to serve, if using

1/2 - 1 chicken stock cube

boiling water to fill a big bowl

1 stalk of lemongrass

a small piece of galangal, or ginger if galangal's not available

a few kaffir lime leaves

four birds eye chillies (don't worry, you don't actually eat the chillies - unless you want to)

one shallot or a small piece of white onion

a big heaped teaspoon of chilli paste in oil nam prik pao

a couple of mushrooms

one tomato

some prawns - shell on, shell off, cooked or raw, up to you

fish sauce

one lime

small handful of coriander leaves

If serving with rice, cook the rice first - I made double the amount needed so I could have a kao pad for Sunday brunch the next day.

Boil the kettle and either make up with the stock cube in a measuring jug or, as I've done, just straight into the soup bowl. With hindsight this probably wasn't the best way to do it as it was really hot picking up the bowl to tip into the pan! 

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Prepare the ingredients:

  • remove the outer layer from the lemongrass, cut into two or three shorter pieces and bash with a rolling pin
  • wash and slice the galangal or ginger
  • tear the leaves from the stalk of the lime leaves and discard the stalks (this smells AMAZING by the way!)
  • bash the chillies with the end of the knife or a rolling pin to squash and slightly open them, then remove the stalks
The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong
  • slice the shallot or onion and the mushrooms
  • slice the tomato lengthways into around eight pieces
The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

 Put a saucepan on a medium heat, carefully pour in the stock and bring to the boil.  Add the lemongrass, galangal, lime leaves and chillies and boil for two minutes.

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Then add the shallot, chilli paste, mushrooms and tomato and boil for another two minutes.

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Next the prawns go in for a further two minutes. Halve the lime and chop the coriander.

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Add a couple of dashes of fish sauce to taste and squeeze in the lime juice.  Taste and add more fish sauce or lime juice if needed.

Throw in the coriander leaves and immediately remove from the heat.

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Ladle into a bowl and eat alone or serve with rice.

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Another reason I love this soup is that it forces me to really enjoy it and eat slowly, picking out the lemongrass, galangal, lime leaves and chillies, and shelling the prawns.

The Tinest Thai Rachel Walder tom yum goong

Delicious!



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Pork and prawn balls in noodle soup

This is a really lovely soup and very quick to make too (well, after the meatballs have chilled for half an hour in the fridge!).  Very clean tasting broth with lime and ginger, and great textures with the soup, meatballs and noodles - and then fresh spring onions and chillies layer the flavour even more.

Especially quick if you are using up left over pork and prawn mixture after making sesame toasts. And also if, like me, you're using a ready mixed pack of stir fry veg and 'straight to wok' type noodles.

I'm not really sure about quantities here as I used up leftovers, but you'll need to make the full amount anyway as it uses a whole egg. The mixture freezes really well though so if you don't use it all at once, it will freeze for another day, or you could make some pork and prawn sesame toasts.  

Here's how to make the paste:

400g total weight of pork tenderloin and prawns (I used half and half but it doesn't have to be precise)

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1/2 teaspoon each salt and white pepper

small handful of coriander leaves, chopped

2 teaspoons soy sauce

one egg, beaten

Whizz the pork first in a food processor to mince, then add the prawns and just pulse as it will come together very quickly. Add the garlic, salt and pepper and coriander leaves and pulse again.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup

Add the soy sauce and beaten egg and mix by hand to combine.

This is the mixture for the sesame toasts so if you have that already you now need to add a few other things. I had probably a quarter of this quantity left and added the following:

1 red chilli, chopped

1 spring onion, chopped

a good pinch of sugar

a tiny splash of fish sauce

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup

Mix all the ingredients together, then make little balls and put on a plate in the fridge to chill for around 30 minutes. The mixture is quite wet so I didn't make balls as such, just sort of little blobs.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup

For the soup itself - and again these aren't precise quantities so just add to taste and adjust as necessary  - I used the following for two portions

a bit less than half a litre water

about half a Knorr chicken stock cube

a piece of ginger, perhaps 2 cm or so, sliced

juice of half a lime (it was a really juicy one so you might need more)

a good splash of fish sauce, perhaps half a tablespoon

about half a teaspoon of sugar, perhaps a little more

a big handful of veg from a packet of stir fry veg (or use a mixture of cabbage, book choy, bean sprouts or whatever you like)

rice noodles

to serve: coriander and mint if you have them, sliced red chilli and spring onions

Bring the water to the boil in the pan and add the stock cube then the ginger, lime juice, fish sauce and sugar and simmer for three or four minutes.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup

Drop in the meatballs / blobs and simmer for another five minutes.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup

Add the vegetables and rice noodles and simmer for a further two to three minutes.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup

Ladle into bowls and top with the fresh herbs, if using, and the sliced chillies and spring onions. Add another squeeze of lime if needed.

This is so delicious I really hope you try it. Let me know what you think!

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder pork and prawn ball noodle soup


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Kao tom - rice soup

An everyday breakfast or light meal, kao tom is a lovely nourishing rice soup - ideal plain for those a little under the weather or with added flavours for a really delicious but simple dish.

I'm currently staying for a few days to help my papa while he recovers from a bad fall.  It's a beautiful crisp autumn day and I made him a kao tom with chicken this morningto get the day off to a  good and nurturing start.

Of course I had a bowl myself too - and included an egg in mine.  The egg is optional and as it is put in the bowl right at the end before pouring over the broth it is just very lightly cooked.  So it's up to you of course how you feel about eating your eggs 'rare'!

You need cooked rice for this, so do make that first - it'll be really annoying to start cooking and then realise you don't have it to hand ...

Serves two

Stock cube (I used about 3/4 of a chicken knorr cube)

One peeled garlic clove, just flattened slightly

A little chicken (or pork or seafood or whatever you fancy) - I used about half a chicken breast chopped into small pieces

Cooked rice for two people

2-4 spring onions, chopped

Coriander (I couldn't get any fresh coriander here, so used 1/2 teaspoon of coriander from a jar, but just omit if you don't have any)

An egg per person (optional)

As usual, the dish comes together quickly, so get the ingredients out first.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

Boil the kettle and then add enough water to a saucepan (the easiest way to measure is to pour into the bowls you'll be using then tip into the pan - and then add a bit more).

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

Add most of a stock cube and the garlic clove and bring to a simmer, then add the meat and/or fish and cook for around 3-4 minutes (timings will depend on what meat or fish you're cooking and how big the cubes of meat are).

As I wasn't using fresh coriander, I also added the jarred coriander to the pan while the chicken was cooking.

Add the cooked rice towards the end of the meat's cooking time and simmer a little longer.  When I was shown how to make this soup, I was told to cook until the 'rice gets big', as it will swell a little more as it cooks in the broth.

After maybe a minute, add the spring onions and take off the heat, and add some coriander if using.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

Crack an egg into each bowl for those that are having egg.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

Spoon the chicken and rice into each bowl first and top with the hot broth.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom
The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

Delicious served with garlic fried in its skin, or simple condiments of sugar and dried chillies to taste.  Or just plain as it comes if you're ill or have an upset tummy!

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

The egg is lightly poached in the broth and adds beautiful golden swirls of yolk to the soup when broken.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder kao tom

I hope you like this recipe!  Do let me know if you tried it ...



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