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Chicken and Coconut-Milk Soup
with Galangal



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Chicken and Coconut-Milk Soup
with Galangal

Jean-Georges Vongerichten,
Vong, New York
America’s Best Chefs
Editorial Director: Judith Hill, Food & Wine Books,
 1995, American Express Publishing Corp.


“This exceptional rendition of a Thai favorite brims with exotic flavors, such
as galangal and red curry paste (made with chiles and garlic). The soup is an
exciting start for a dinner party, and you can make it in twenty-five minutes.”

Chef’s Wine Suggestion:  An extremely rich, aromatic white wine will support
the soup’s complexity and the strong flavors of the galangal, coconut milk and
chiles. The best choice would be a recent vintage of Condrieu (made from the
viognier grape) from the Rhône Valley in France.

Serves 6

3 tablespoons cooking oil
1 onion, cut into quarters and sliced thin
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste *
3 small fresh red chile peppers, seed
and ribs removed, minced,
or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried red pepper flakes
4 1/4-inch slices fresh or dried galangal*
or four 1/4-inch slices fresh ginger
2 stalks lemongrass*, bottom third only,
cut into 2-inch pieces,
or two 3-inch strips lemon zest
1 1/2 quarts chicken stock, or canned
low sodium chicken broth
3 cups canned unsweetened coconut milk
2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
(nam pla or nuoc mam)*
2 tablespoons lime juice
3 fresh or dried kaffir lime leaves*,
or one 2-inch strip lime zest
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken
breasts, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
3 scallions, white and light green parts only,
cut into thin slices
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro

*Available at Asian markets

1. In a large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion,
garlic, curry paste, chiles, galangal and lemongrass and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the
stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer 15 minutes.
2. Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, lime juice, lime leaves and salt.
Add the chicken and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Simmer
until the chicken is just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Stir in the
scallions and cilantro and serve.

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