Chicken & Bamboo is a classic Vietnamese noodle soup traditionally enjoyed at breakfast. This recipe demonstrates making your own chicken stock from scratch which can be frozen and used at a later date. This delicious soup is also warming and wholesome for when you are feeling a little under the weather.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour 10 minutes
You will need:
For the stock:
1 whole free-range or organic chicken
1 free-range or organic chicken stock cube
1 tbsp rock sugar (or use a pinch of regular sugar)
1 tsp rock salt
6 tbsp premium fish sauce
140g tinned bamboo shoots (sliced)
For the soup:
280g dry rice noodles
2 spring onions, use both ends, finely sliced
4 tbsp coriander, roughly chopped or torn
2 Asian shallots (or round shallots) sliced into thin semi circles
Pinch of black pepper
4 wedges of lime or lemon
Freshly cut chillies (optional)
What to do:
Place a whole chicken and a stock cube in a large saucepan and pour over 3.5 litres of boiling water. Cook on a medium heat at a gentle boil for 50 minutes to 1 hour with a lid on. Gently remove any excess scum after 20 minutes then add rock sugar, rock salt and fish sauce to the broth.
Meanwhile, place the vermicelli in a heat-proof bowl, and immerse in boiling water. Cover the bowl and leave for approximately 10 minutes or until the noodles are soft. Drain and rinse with warm water to get rid excess starch. Place the cooked vermicelli into soup bowls.
Slice the shallots and fry in a tablespoon of cooking oil until golden and crispy. Divide the shallots and place onto each bowl with sliced spring onions and coriander.
Place the Tenderstem in a container and blanch with boiling water from a kettle for 5 minutes with a lid then remove and place on top of the noodles.
Remove the chicken from the stock after 50 minutes, make sure the juices run clear and leave to rest and cool for 20 minutes. Remove undesired excess fat that forms on top of the stock with a ladle and discard.
Add the tinned bamboo to the stock and continue to cook for a further 10 minutes.
Slice the chicken into bite sized pieces. Place one thigh or breast per portion onto the noodles. (The chicken can also be torn by hand).
Bring broth to the boil just before serving.
Add a pinch of black pepper to each bowl and ladle piping hot broth with bamboo onto the noodle bowls. Make sure everything is immersed in broth. Serve immediately with a squeeze of lemon or lime at the table and garnish with freshly cut chillies if wanted.
Tip: If you want to get even more goodness out of this recipe Uyen suggests saving the water you have blanched the Tenderstem in for a refreshing drink.