Soto ayam, Indonesian chicken noodle soup recipe

Soto ayam, Indonesian chicken noodle soup recipe

The sunny appearance of this easy, spicy favourite just adds to its energising effects

This recipe is based on Soto Ayam (soup chicken), a spicy noodle soup popular throughout South East Asia. Here, spinach is added for extra nutrients and fibre.

Ingredients (serves 4)

6 chicken legs

2 stalks lemongrass, quartered

4 Kaffir lime leaves

6 cloves garlic, peeled

pinch of salt

6 shallots, peeled, roughly chopped

thumb-sized piece ginger, peeled, chopped

2 tsp cumin seeds

2 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp whole black peppercorns

1 tsp ground turmeric

1 tbsp grapeseed oil

200ml coconut milk, optional

salt and freshly ground black pepper

To serve: 100g bean noodles, cooked; 75g fresh beansprouts; handful fresh spinach leaves; 2 boiled, peeled eggs and lemon wedges


1 Place the chicken in a large saucepan, with 1.5L water, lemongrass, lime leaves, garlic and salt. Bring to the boil over a medium-high heat then cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes.

2 Meanwhile, toast the cumin seeds, coriander and peppercorns in a dry pan over a medium heat for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Then pound the spices to a paste together with the shallots, ginger and garlic in a pestle and mortar. Stir in the ground turmeric.

3 Remove the chicken. Cool slightly, then discard the skin and bones, and shred the meat.

4 Remove and discard the lemongrass, lime leaves and garlic from the poaching liquid.

5 Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat, then sauté the spice paste for a couple of minutes. Add the poaching liquid and coconut milk, if using. Bring to the boil, then simmer over a low heat for 10 minutes. Season to taste.

6 Divide the noodles between four bowls. Top with the chicken, beansprouts and spinach.

7 Divide the soup between the bowls, top with egg and serve with lemon wedges on the side.

Nutritional information per serving: 219kcal, 919kJ, 22.8g protein, 13.9g fat, 9.2g carbohydrates, 2.0g fibre


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