This bowl of soup is a satisfying family meal on a cold evening. It warms you through and it is a substantial meal. The kids love the chicken meat balls and noodles and the adults can get a fix of lots of fresh herbs and chilli if they choose to. Chicken soup has magical powers I am sure.
This recipe is a quick one to pull together at the end of a busy day. It takes less than 30 minutes to make but if you need it even faster you can pre-prepare the noodles and have the chicken balls rolled and ready to go. If the vermicelli noodles are pre-prepared they can be kept covered in the fridge for a few days once they have been soaked. As they are fine they will reheat with the heat of the soup. I switch the vegetables used in this recipe depending on what is available from the garden. Despite this I tend to keep the mushrooms in the recipe each time as I love the texture of the lightly cooked little button mushrooms. They retain their firm texture that I love. I really dislike soggy vegetables….
I things that make this chicken soup a worthy inclusion on your family dinner menu include:
- It has some hidden vegetables to add nutritional value to the meal.
- It uses lots of fresh garden herbs. Herbs contain a range of vitamins and antioxidants that are beneficial additions to a family meal.
- It is quick and easy to make
- If you wish to use less of the chicken meatballs you can cook the excess, flattened into burgers in a pan while the soup is cooking. Add them to the kids lunch box or sandwiches the next day.
- Any left overs (unlikely) taste even better the next day once the flavors have had time to develop and meld
- Vermicelli noodles
- Soup Base:
- 1.75 liters of chicken stock
- 2 lemongrass stalks
- 4 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 shallot chopped
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1½ tablespoons fish sauce
- Chicken Meatballs
- 350 grams chicken - minced
- 1 shallot
- handful of fresh coriander leaves
- 2 bread ends - finely chopped to breadcrumbs
- 1 small carrot grated
- handful of green beans chopped
- 100-150 grams button mushrooms halved
- 2 and ½ tablespoons lime juice
- handful of fresh kale leaves - chopped and stems removed
- fresh mint leaves
- fresh coriander leaves
- fresh chilli - chopped
- fresh Vietnamese mint leaves - or use basil if you don't grow this herb
- Boil a jug and soak the noodles for a minute until they soften, drain and set aside
- Add the lemongrass. shallot, stock, lemon juice and fish sauce to a pot and bring to a simmer
- To make the meatballs combine the ingredients and roll into small balls no larger than table tennis balls
- Once the stock is simmering add the meatballs and cook at the boil for 5 minutes
- Add the vegetables and cook for a further 3 minutes
- Top with the lime juice
- Add the drained noodles evenly among the bowls and top with the soup
- Add the fresh herbs, kale and chilli
Do you have a magical chicken soup recipe? If not, give this one a try and let me know what you think.
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