Thursday, October 14, 2010

Spicy Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup: French Fridays with Dorie

Spicy Vietnamese Soup: Week Three


In this weeks recipe I served the noodles the Vietnamese way, in the serving bowls not in the soup, or they become soggy. The same holds true for any crunchy add ins like bean sprouts etc.

Tip for carnivores: I crisped up the chicken skins in the oven and cracked a few pieces for each bowl as a garnish. OMG sooo good!!! IS CRISPY CHICKEN THE NEW BACON!?! Momofuku's David Chang thinks so.

No matter where you live food has the power to transport you. This week I took a trip to Vietnam with Dorie's wonderful soup recipe. It brings back memories of that fresh and distinctive cuisine that I don't get to experience all that often. I do have a few favorite Vietnamese restaurants that I try to get to when I can: http://www.monsoonrestaurants.com/ in Seattle http://www.slanteddoor.com/ in San Fransisco and http://www.xyclorestaurant.com/ in Oakland. All three of these restaurants marry traditional Vietnamese cuisine with pacific northwest innovation and are fabulous.


This soup gives us an opportunity to broaden our food horizons. Fresh and lively it has many of the ingredients that symbolize Vietnamese food: coconut milk, chili's, fish sauce, ginger. I love that there is a certain authenticity and purity to this dish. It was so flavorful. When I first used fish sauce I was scared to death. I thought there is no way I would like it. But it is like anchovies in sauces, it melts into the dish and adds a certain depth that you just can't get without it. Be brave. Neither one tastes like fish in the end.

I love to cook from Andrea Nguyen's book: Into the Vietnamese kitchen from Tenspeed press. It gave me more confidence to use ingredients that I was not familiar with and in doing so I've been able to explore a way of cooking that I would never have tried.

As with all of my Friday posts I will feature a Dorie Greenspan recipe for our group French Fridays with Dorie. The recipe will not be shown but I encourage anyone who enjoys these Friday posts to pick up Dorie's newest cookbook: Around my French Table or for that matter join the group and cook along.

Enjoy!

15 comments:

  1. I like your blog, Beth!!! And your soup looks delicious~~

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  2. Love the photo! Your soup looks amazing! :)

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  3. Broadening horizons...definitely! Your dish looks sooo amazing! BTW, I've been playing with crispy duck! Its so much fun this adventure, isn't it?

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  4. Thanks for posting about the chicken skin - I will do that next time!

    My soup turned out great, too...I usually use half the amount of fish sauce in recipes but this time I didn't & it was fine.

    Beautiful photo!

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  5. How smart you were not to add the noodles directly. And crispy chicken skins sound like heaven. Beautifully done!

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  6. ^i'm with Clivia.
    i like your glass dipping dishes too, nice addition to the spread :) *Buttercreambarbie

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  7. Yup I ate the fish! Not the head...but the rest of it was really tasty! The server was so proud to bring that whole fish to the table that I just couldn't say no. You should go to Vietnam if you get the chance - it's beautiful. I'd highly recommend Saigon and then travelling up the coast and stopping in the little towns like Hoi An and Hue along the way!

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  8. Gorgeous soup, and I love the crispy chicken skin garnish. i think you're right and it may be the next bacon. We just had Thanksgiving here, and the only part of the turkey I eat hot is the skin (and stuffing). Oh, and in Japan you can find crispy chicken skin on the menu, along with chicken cartilage. Mmmm.
    :)

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  9. Crisping the chicken...genius! I love that idea and will try that next time. I wish I had known about the Vietnamese way of serving the noodles in a separate bowl - I found out very soon how quickly they absorb the broth. Your soup looks wonderful!

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  10. Well, I just love your "mod" blog design! And your header photo: stunning! I agree - this definitely broadened my horizon. Sounds like you have had some Vietnamese cooking experience - it was quite delicious I thought! Great tip on the "crisp" too!

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  11. Yeah ur rite, food has the power to tansport us and i love how well it broadens our horizans too!!

    I love to keep the add ons crunchy too!!

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  12. Hi there, lovely blog you have here. It's an honour to be listed on your blog list, thank you!
    I love everything about vietnam, the food, the culture, the people....lucky for me my partner is from Vietnam then aye! ;-) Your soup looks lovely -Emm

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  13. Emma! thanks so much for stopping by:) I love your blog. I'm jealous that you get Vietnamese food often...I'm assuming your partner shares cooking recreation.

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  14. Aha you assume wrong :-( ..If I want Vietnamese food, I have to make it myself or fly to Perth to stay with my Mother-in-law!!! My partner actually prefers western food!! And if he does ever cook vietnamese, it's meaty and I'm vego. *sigh* Ah well I do make up for it when we head to Perth or Vietnam. Have a great day :-)

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