Adapted from “Vietnamese Home Cooking.” To save on time get the stock cooking and shred the cooked chicken and chop garnishes while you wait.
- 4 quarts water
- 1 bunch green onion, dark green cut off for soup, white and light green thinly sliced for garnish
- 2 pieces fresh ginger, 2 inches each, left whole and crushed
- 1 tablespoon sea salt (to taste)
- 3 lbs chicken breast halves, bone & skin on
- 3 1⁄2 lbs chicken wings, backs, and necks
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 (16 ounce) package rice vermicelli, soaked in hot water for 30 minutes and drained
- 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1 bunch fresh Thai basil
- 3 cups fresh mung bean sprouts
- 1 lime, cut into 6 wedges
- 1 jalapeno, stemmed and thinly sliced (remove seeds first, if you like)
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- chili-garlic sauce, such as sriracha (for serving)
- In a soup pot, bring the water, scallions, ginger, and salt to a boil.
- Add the chicken breasts and return to a boil. Skim well.
- Lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Turn the burner off, cover the pan, and let the chicken sit for 15 minutes.
- Transfer the chicken to a bowl of ice water. Let it sit for 15 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, put the chicken wings, backs, and necks into a large heatproof bowl. Bring a tea kettle of water to a boil and pour it over the chicken pieces. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Drain the chicken and rinse with cold water.
- Add the chicken pieces and brown sugar to the pot of stock from the breasts.
- Return the liquid to a boil. Skim the surface thoroughly. Cook, skimming often, for 1 1/2 hours.
- With a large slotted spoon, remove the chicken pieces, ginger, and scallions.
- Drain the chicken breasts, pat them dry, and discard the skin and bones.
- Shred the meat with your hands. Add it and the noodles to the pot of chicken stock. Add a small handful of scallions and half the cilantro. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with Thai basil, sprouts, lime, jalapeno, fish sauce, and chili-garlic sauce.
Excellent recipe that lends itself to variations. Lots of flavor. I used homemade chicken stock I had on hand, so skipped the wings, necks, etc. I just added the ginger and green onion tops to it and simmered for about an hour. I used boneless, skinless chicken breast and poached it in the broth before shredding. From there on in I followed the recipe. Loved the cilantro and basil and also added some Red Rooster chili-garlic sauce. Would be good with tofu instead of chicken, and also with shiitakes. Made for ZWT 9.
This soup was good. I made a few changes, but made the soup basically as directed. I used Kosher salt instead of sea salt because that's what I had on hand. I used Chicken quarters instead of bone-in breasts and wings because it was more cost effective. I used regular basil instead of Thai basil because I couldn't find the Thai basil anywhere around here. And I added a very generous amount of the Srirracha, simply because we love things spicy. I served this soup with Oyster crackers and Egg rolls for a delicious dinner tonight. Thanks for a great chicken soup JD. Made for the Asian round of ZWT9 for team Tasty Testers.