This soup takes no time at all to make since I don't make a paste, I simply just add all of the ingredients to the stock which infuse it beautifully with all the fragrance of the Thai ingredients. One word of advice I would give is that I cook the noodles only as needed. This soup makes 4 generous bowls but unless you are eating it all only cook what you need – 50g of noodles per person. The reason I do this is that if you don’t eat it all, the noodles will just absorb the broth and overcook.
For this recipe I have used chicken however you can easily use prawns, tofu or even some leftover turkey (when you have it!).
1250ml good quality chicken or vegetable stock (Organic if you can)
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 inch piece of ginger, peeled
1-2 chillies, sliced (de-seeded if you prefer a milder soup)
3-4 Lime leaves, ripped in half
2 stalks of lemongrass, tough outer leaves removed
½ - 1 juicy lime
1 tbsp fish sauce
½ – 1 tsp sugar (optional)
200g noodles of your choice (I like to use rice noodles)
1 cooked chicken breast, sliced or shredded into small pieces
75g mange tout, cut in half diagonally
100g green beans, cut in half
Small handful of fresh coriander
Pour the stock into a large pan and put over a medium heat. Thinly slice the garlic and ginger into shards then add to the stock along with the chillies and lime leaves. Using the back of your knife bruise the lemongrass then cut into roughly 3 inch pieces. Add to the stock then squeeze in the juice of half the lime, fish sauce and sugar (if using). Bring to a gentle boil then reduce the heat and allow to gently simmer for 10-15 minutes.
While the broth is simmering and gently infusing, cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. As soon as they are ready drain them then rinse under cold water to stop them from cooking anymore and divide into 4 serving bowls.
Add the shredded chicken, mange tout and green beans and simmer for 2-3 minutes until the chicken is warmed through and the vegetables are tender but still with a crisp bite. Taste to check the seasoning then if needed squeeze in a little more lime juice. If you like at this point you can remove the lemongrass and the lime leaves, however I tend to just leave them in and eat around them! Sprinkle in most of the coriander then ladle over the noodles. Finish with a final scattering of coriander then slurp, enjoy and feel instantly revitalised.