Chunky Thai Turmeric Chicken Soup
This soup is literally bursting with goodness, not to mention flavour! One portion provides 391 calories, an enormous 38g of Protein, four brightly coloured veggies and 30% of your fibre intake. And with over 200% of your daily Vitamin A requirements it is perfect for when you’re feeling run down or in need of an immune system boost. Super easy to swap chicken for red lentils for vegans too.
The garlic and ginger have wonderful anti-inflammatory properties, and I managed to pack in a rainbow of 4 brightly coloured vegetables, alongside the chicken and chickpeas for a real protein punch! It freezes very well too, so I always have individual portions stocked in my freezer for a quick lunch. But most helpfully, this works brilliantly over some wholegrain rice or quinoa for a healthy version of Thai Chicken Curry for dinner. I do love versatile freezer food that can provide me with nutrient dense dinners on those inevitable manic days that I either run out of fresh food in the fridge or am just too darn tired to cook!
But arguably the most interesting and potent of all of the ingredients is the turmeric. Curcumin is the yellow pigment and main active ingredient in turmeric and has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant. Curcumin has demonstrated incredible anti-cancer benefits.
And when combined with a fat (eg. an oil) and black pepper, curcumin’s anti-cancer effects are further amplified as it becomes more readily available to the body.
2 stalk Celery
1 tbsp Rapeseed Oil
2 clove Garlic
2 Stalk Lemongrass
1 Sweet Potato
2 tsp Turmeric
1 tbsp Grated Ginger
200g Drained Chickpeas
300 ml Chicken Stock (Or vegetable stock if Vegan)
400ml Unsweetened Coconut Milk
2 x Chicken Supreme (Chicken breast on the bone) — Or 100g Red Lentils if Vegan.
4 leaves of Cavalo Nero
Salt & Pepper to taste
I have just been re-introduced to the glory of poaching a chicken! Not only is it cooked without using any fats (like oils), it is so moist and versatile. I have used it in this soup recipe, but it is delicious shredded into a salad too…recipe coming soon!
· Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
· Put the chicken breasts in a large saucepan of cold water and bring to the boil.
· Simmer on a very low heat for 20 mins or until cooked through.
· Take out of the water and leave to cool.
· Dice the onions and celery.
· Finely dice the chilli and the lemongrass.
· Mince the garlic and grate the ginger.
· Chop the Cavalo Nero.
· Peel and chop the sweet potato and carrots; add a little oil and roast them for 30 mins.
· Heat 1 tsp oil in a large saucepan and sweat the onions and celery for 5 minutes.
· Add the garlic, chilli, coriander and ginger and fry for one more minute before adding the chicken (or veg) stock and coconut milk.
· Add the drained chickpeas. (and the lentils if vegan)
· Simmer for 15 minutes.
· Add the roasted sweet potato and carrots; and the chopped Cavolo Nero and continue to simmer for another 5 minutes.
· To shred the chicken — literally pull it apart into little pieces with your hands.
· Add the shredded chicken and stir through.
· To serve, garnish with fresh coriander and chilli.
· Season to taste and enjoy!
P.S. If using this recipe as a curry with rice, just use half the amount of stock instead and serve over wholegrain rice.
Cheats tip — if you don’t have any fresh ginger, lemongrass or chilli, just stock the larder with the jars of dry or pureed spices so that you always have the Thai tastes to hand should the mood strike!