Well, I’m not sure where all of you live, but here in western Canada, winter has arrived. When I get home from work each evening, the house is chilly and dark, and some primeval gene urges me to seek out warm, comforting food. For my husband and I that generally means soup: the thicker, the better! Here is a soup that will warm you to your toes, and has comfort written all over it. I have adapted the recipe from the newest in the must-have Canadian series by Shelley Adams, “Whitewater Cooks with Passion”. My version is much spicier, and the first time I made it, the consistency was more like a stew, which was fine for the both of us. You may need to add a bit more broth as well, or enjoy the thicker version! The recipe calls for a couple of unusual ingredients: sauerkraut, and kecap manis. I was really intrigued and delighted by this. Both ingredients add a slightly exotic accent to this already super flavourful potage. For the full-on winter experience, serve the soup with hot buttered onion or garlic naan. You may feel like hibernating after a meal like this, but then hey, isn’t that what winter is all about?
I will be bringing a giant pot of this winter pick-me-up over to Angie’s Fiesta Friday. I know that some of the gang have already been hit hard by some frigid temperatures, so I’m sure they will appreciate it. If you haven’t joined us yet, please check us out through our wonderful host at The Novice Gardener.
Bengali Chicken Soup
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, diced
4 – 5 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
1 ½ teaspoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and grated
½ teaspoon dried red chili flakes
1 ½ teaspoons turmeric
6 cups low sodium chicken stock
1 – 14 ounce can coconut milk
½ cup jasmine rice, rinsed and uncooked
2 cups sauerkraut, with liquid
½ cup carrots, peeled and sliced
1 cup potatoes, peeled and sliced
½ cup kecap manis*
1 cup cilantro, chopped
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Mix chicken spices together in a large bowl. Add the thighs and mix well, to coat the chicken on all sides.
Place in a parchment lined baking dish and bake for 30 – 35 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
Remove from the oven and set aside. Once it is cooled, shred or chop into pieces.
While the chicken is baking, heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add the onions and garlic and sauté over medium high heat, until the onions are soft.
Add the coriander, curry powder, ginger, chili flakes and turmeric to the onions and continue to sauté for another 2 minutes, until the spices are fragrant.
Add the chicken stock, coconut milk, rice, sauerkraut, carrots, potatoes, chicken and kecap manis and bring to a boil.
Turn the heat down to a simmer. Cover and cook for 1 hour. Check for your desired thickness. If too thick, add more chicken stock.
Stir in the chopped cilantro and serve.
Serve this with hot, buttered garlic or onion naan!
*Kecap Manis is a thick, sweet soya sauce from Indonesia, which is sold in all Asian markets, or in the Asian section of your grocery store.