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Ginger Chicken Soup

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Serves four as a light main course.

  • by Maryellen Driscoll from Fine Cooking
    Issue 85

  • 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 10 to 12 oz. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat (about 3 medium)
  • 2 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 Tbs. soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. Asian chile paste, like sambal oelek or Sriracha
  • 1/4 cup packed fresh cilantro
  • 2 Tbs. thinly sliced scallion (green tops only)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbs. mild vegetable oil, like canola or safflower oil
  • 1 cup packed baby spinach (about 2 oz.)

Peel the ginger and slice it into four 1/4-inch coins. Using the flat side of a chef’s knife or a meat pounder, smash the coins. Smash the garlic and remove the skin.

In a medium saucepan, com­bine the ginger, garlic, chicken, broth, soy sauce, lemon juice, chile paste, and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and gently simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Using a pair of tongs, transfer the chicken to a plate. Use a slotted spoon to remove the ginger and garlic and discard. Keep the broth warm.

Tip:

If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, mince the scallions and cilantro, transfer to a small bowl to combine with the oil, and scrape the mixture back onto a cutting board. Position the blade of a chef’s knife at a 30-degree angle to the board and repeatedly drag the blade over the cilantro mixture using a bit of pressure to mash it.

Finely chop the cilantro and scallion. Put them in a mortar, add a pinch of salt and 2 tsp. of the oil, and pound and mash with the pestle (see tip). Once the mixture begins to blend, add the remaining teaspoon of oil. Continue to grind the pestle into the cilantro mixture until it is aromatic and has the consistency of a paste.

Once the chicken is cool, slice it thinly and portion it into four soup bowls. Return the broth to a simmer and season with salt to taste. Add the spinach to the broth and continue to simmer until it’s wilted, 1 to 2 minutes more. Ladle the broth and spinach evenly over each portion of chicken and then top each with a dollop of the cilantro paste.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on four servings; Calories (kcal): 160; Fat (g): 10; Fat Calories (kcal): 80; Saturated Fat (g): 2; Protein (g): 16; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 4; Carbohydrates (g): 4; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3; Sodium (mg): 700; Cholesterol (mg): 45; Fiber (g): 0;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Adding amazing taste to everyday dishes couldn’t be easier, as long as you’re using College Inn Broth. This message is being posted on behalf of Del Monte and we hope that it is of interest for you.

I just made it through the broth with the chicken - used Asian Garlic Chili sauce as that is what I had - FABULOUS! Served over brown rice - this will now be a staple. Add a little or a lot extra garlic chili sauce for a kick. 6 and 8 year olds loved it as well as the parents.

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