This soup can’t make up its mind where it’s from – it’s all in the noodles! It can be Japanese if you use soba, or Vietnamese if you use flat rice ones! Just use what you have in the store cupboard! But there is a Vietnamese twist with the nuoc cham or traditional dipping sauce (see under Summer Rolls). It’s a meal in a bowl. Traditionalists make this from scratch by boiling a chicken or chicken pieces with ginger, star anise etc to make a broth, but I always have some chicken stock in the freezer, so it’s ideal to defrost and just throw it all together!
Fusion chicken noodle soup
1 litre chicken stock, thick with chicken pieces picked from the carcase
1/2 inch of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely sliced
2 star anise
1/2 inch cinnamon stick
20 g dried shrimp
4 heads of pak choi, separated into leaves
2 oz/100g of soba, or 220g/4 oz flat rice rice noodles (approx,I just grab as much or as little as I want depending on the amount of stock I am using)
coriander leaves, mint and/or Thai basil to garnish
Heat the stock, and when simmering add the garlic, ginger, dried shrimp, star anise and cinnamon stick. Let the flavours infuse for 10 minutes or so. Then add the noodles and the pak choi and simmer until cooked through. Ladle into soup bowls (remove cinnamon and star anise if you can be beoghered), add the herb garnishes and then add the dipping sauce, with the hot red chillies, lime juice and fish sauce, to add a bit of fire to the dish. Yummy.