Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Food Friday

 Food Friday Thai 023 It’s probably inevitable that if you’re passionate about food and like to cook you’ll become pretty darn good in the kitchen. So good in fact that you’ll come to really like your own cooking. It is after all, a reflection of what you like, made just the way you like it, served promptly in amiable surroundings. The downside of all this proficiency is that it takes really good food to impress you.

So, when I get something in my mouth that makes me want to sing and bounce happily in my naugahyde booth an instant craving results. Before I know it, I’m drooling at the restaurant door five minutes before they open.  Such was the case with some  Chicken Galangal Soup I tasted recently.  I tried a couple of times to duplicate this rich brothy soup but failed so I called a couple friends and invited them over to cook. It happened to be a Friday.

There are few things more pleasurable than a sunny afternoon with boon companions until you add a kitchen and a quest.

Like artists approaching a blank canvas we had our vision and began with bold strokes. We started with two cans of coconut milk and one can of chicken broth. To amp up the mouth feel we added a can of coconut cream which got us right where we wanted to be. We sliced and bruised and soon our pot quietly simmered with all those exotic ingredients. We tasted and compared; the shape was there but we had to fill in the color and texture. In went a teaspoon of red curry paste; a bit of sugar; a dash of chili oil…simmer…taste…add more red curry, sugar and chili oil. Squeeze a lime; squeeze another, more sugar. Until at last…our masterpiece.

We celebrated that night with a Thai dinner on the deck.

The Menu:

Chicken Satay with spicy peanut dipping sauce

Sweet cucumber salad

Shrimp and Tofu Phad Thai

Grilled corn

Chicken Galangal Soup

Food Friday Thai 027Food Friday Thai 019Food Friday Thai 025We paired this dinner with a couple bottles of Bainbridge Island Winery’s Ferryboat White but Hollind makes a mean Mojito with fresh mint from her garden. Once you go there it’s hard to turn back. She also supplied us with a six pack of Singha Thai beer and somehow the wine just never got opened.

 Food Friday Thai 012 Chicken Galangal Soup

Chefs: Hollind, Carla and Veni

Serves 6

2 cans coconut milk

1 can coconut cream

1 can low sodium chicken broth

3 TBS Premium Fish Sauce

2 TBS Sugar

1 tsp chili oil

2 stalks lemon grass cut down the middle then sliced into three inch increments, bruised.

6 Kaffir lime leaves, bruised.

2 TBS cilantro, chopped

4 inch Galangal; peeled and sliced.

1 inch sliced ginger

4 TBS Thai red curry paste

Juice from 1 ½ limes

One can straw mushroom, rinsed.

2 chicken breast, sliced.

Add all ingredients except the chicken breasts. Simmer for 45 minutes or until the desired consistency and flavor is reached. The longer you simmer the thicker and more flavorful the soup. (If it gets too thick you can add chicken stock or coconut milk to thin). If you want you can strain but I like to leave all the bits and pieces. Add chicken and continue simmering until the chicken is cooked through (about 10 minutes). Garnish with cilantro and green onions. Serve with rice. Enjoy!

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