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Thai Dragon Soup

Don’t ask me why it’s called Thai Dragon Soup. I couldn’t find any information on the background of it. But the soup was a warm saviour on a freezing cold night. I bet you there is no easier soup recipe than this. No blending, adding cream, no separate preparations yadi yadi da….All that is too much work.

But this Soup my friends is one of the easiest ones I have made. Sumptuous, nutritious and fulfilling. While browsing for ideas for quick dinner I came across a Thai Dragon Bowl Soup (http://gourmeh.wordpress.com/2011/03/21/499/) which is the original version and inspiration to my making this soup. My Thai Dragon Soup was an adaptation of that recipe as my fridge wasn’t as well stocked for a proper dinner that night.

Ingredients:

2 Capsicums sliced thinly;
2 Onions sliced thinly;
8-10 White Button mushrooms (any mushroom will do) sliced thinly;
8-10 Green Beans cut into 2-3 pieces each (longer the better);
100 gm Rice Noodle (Thick flat type);
6-7 cloves of Garlic crushed;
1 knob of Ginger peeled and crushed;
2 stalks of Bruised Lemon grass stalks;
2 Green Chillies slit;
Lemon Juice;
Worcester sauce;
6-8 cups of Water;
Salt & Pepper for seasoning;

I had no stock and I thought to myself if I dunk all veggies onto water with a bit of salt and pepper, my stock’s ready. So that’s exactly what I did.

Boil water in a deep saucepan. Throw in crushed garlic, ginger, lemon grass stalks & all the veggies and let it boil. Season with salt and very little pepper as we have added the chillies already. So mind the heat!

Once the colour of the water starts changing, add a small splash of Worcester sauce. It would roughly take about 15-20 minutes tops for the veggies to get cooked. When the water reaches a boil and the colour of the liquid turns a darker brown add the rice noodles. The stock would start to thicken after adding the rice noodle due to its starch. Boil until the noodles are soft and cooked through. Do not overcook as the noodle will absorb most of the stock which is why the noodle is added towards the end and is on the heat for just a little while. Once you remove the soup off the hob and let it rest for about a minute or so and splash in few drops of lemon juice which zests up the soup and takes it to a whole new level.

Yummy soup

Garnish with some coriander for that fresh flavour.

There you go!!! Hot Thai Dragon Soup to keep you warm and give you the comfort food feeling.

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The Not-So-French Soup

Vichyssoise Soup - Source BBC

So yesterday evening I was mulling over what to cook for supper. Was so stumped for ideas on what to make for dinner, I thought to myself, well atleast I am sure that it has to be something light and easy to make. After the heavy brunch at Saffron, I didn’t think I could handle another round of heavy duty food again.

Then I suddenly remembered reading the recipe for Vichyssoise in my sister’s blog -“http://dibribac.wordpress.com/2010/03/28/voila-im-in-french-soup/” and I thought -“Now thats an idea. I have always wanted to experiment with french cuisine and what better time to start than the present”.

I quickly scanned through the link and I felt so excited that I was finally about to foray into some french cooking. I dove head on with the preparation for the very French Vichyssoise soup.

Me being me, I have this compulsive habit of improvising and straying from the original recipe. Sauteed the onions in butter with a sprinkle of salt, and after it became a deep golden brown, I threw in a splash of South African white wine called Obikwa to add just a bit of oomph to the soup. And the aroma was simply gorgeous, and I went “hmmm”. And I thought food had a musical quality to it. Just to share one of the examples – one of my friends who had the good fortune of working in one of the coffee powerhouses once told me the sound of milk being frothed is very important in the preparation of coffee and influences the taste of the coffee.

Well, coming back to the wined up onions sizzling in the saucepan, I boiled the potatoes separately to save some time, and I checked to see if they were cooked enough and poured it into the saucepan with the onions. Thereafter I let it stew for a couple of minutes extra and took it off the stove so it can cool a bit before I pureed it. So after pureeing the potato onion mix, I added the milk and seasoned with salt, pepper and garnished it with chives fresh from my garden. And Voila, the soup was served. The creaminess of the potatoes and the sweet pungence of the onions and chives was just beautiful. But it definitely wasn’t light as I had wanted it to be.

Today, I was telling a colleague that I had tried Vichyssoise, he corrected me and said it was pronounced “Wish-E-Swah”, I disagreed and told him that it was pronounced “vee shee swahzz” like my sister had taught me.  And I came back home with that thought niggling on my mind. I googled the pronunciation and pulled out the correct pronunciation and I was happy to find that I was right. I went onto read some more information about the Vichyssoise  when I came across a bit in the article about the origin of the soup that caught my attention. Surprise suprise! And it said that -“very few people realise that Vichyssoise was invented not in Paris or Lyons or even in Vichy for that matter but was created in New York city at the beginning of the 20th century”. Vichyssoise, the French soup didn’t seem very french anymore.

But french or not, I loved every single drop of the Not-So-French Vichyssoise soup. You oughta try it!

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