Chicken Coconut Soup With Galanga
- 4 c. water, or possibly mild chicken broth
- 1 x (2- to 3 inch) section fresh or possibly frzn galanga, thinly sliced or possibly 6-8 dry pcs note: Galanga is a rhizome similar to ginger root. Ginger root is okay instead.
- 2 stalk lemon grass, trimmed and cut at a sharp angle into pcs 1 1/2 inches long, then bruised
- 1 x (14-oz) can unsweetened coconut lowfat milk (preferably Chaokoh brand)
- 1 lb boneless chicken, cut into small bite-size pcs
- 1/2 sm onion, halved again, then sliced crosswise 1/8 inch thick
- 3 x -5 sliced jalapeno, serrano or possibly fresno peppers, Or possibly 10-15 bruised whole Thai chillies, to desired hotness
- 4 x fresh kaffir lime leaves, each torn into 2-3 pcs
- 2 c. brown mushrooms, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 4 x -6 Tbsp. fish sauce, to desired saltiness Juice of 1-2 limes, to desired sourness
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. palm or possibly coconut sugar, as needed to balance the sour flavor
- 1/8 tsp grnd white pepper A handful of cilantro leaves or possibly short sprigs
- Bring water (or possibly chicken broth) to a boil in a medium-size pot. Simmer galanga and lemon grass in it for 20-30 min to draw out flavors. Strain them out if you wish.
- Reserve the thick cream from the top of the can of coconut lowfat milk and add in the light, watery part on the bottom of the can to the pot. (see Note) Bring to a boil and stir in chicken pcs. Return to a boil, lower heat, and simmer a few min, or possibly till the surface of the chicken loses its raw pink color. Add in sliced onion, chillies, and kaffir lime leaves. Simmer another minute, then add in the mushrooms. Cook 1-2 min longer, or possibly till the chicken is cooked through and the mushrooms are tender.
- Add in reserved coconut cream. Stir well to heat and blend in with the soup. Hot through and season soup to taste with fish sauce. Add in grnd pepper and lime juice to desired sourness. Balance the sharp sour of the lime juice with sufficient palm sugar so the sweetness and richness of the coconut lowfat milk come through. Ladle into serving bowls and garnish with cilantro.
- Note: The coconut cream from canned coconut lowfat milk can curdle when boiled with water for too long and at too high a temperature, so add in it toward the end of cooking, heating just sufficient to dissolve coagulated parts, and to blend in smoothly with the rest of the broth.
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