Chicken Pasta Soup

A friend of mine makes this lovely chicken pasta soup and posts it online for others to salivate on. It always looks so irresistibly good, so I decided it was time to cook some at home too. After all, a nice bowl of delicious soup fresh from the stove is always good to have these cold winter nights.

Because this soup has meat, veggies and pasta in it, you can eat it by itself and it’s a complete meal. The first few times I made this, I cooked a lot. But as is common with pasta dishes, it’s always not so great anymore if you try to reheat it for the next meal. The pasta is already soggy or bloated, and the soup has mostly disappeared. So, recently, I came up with an idea on how to enjoy this dish for more than 1 mealtime, without compromising the pasta.

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CHICKEN PASTA SOUP

2 cups chicken fillet, skin removed and cut to cubes
8 cups of water
Dash of salt

4 tablespoons butter
1 brown onion, minced
6 cloves of garlic, crushed and minced
1 large carrot, diced
3 stalks celery, minced
1 cup ham, chopped
1 chicken cube
Boiling water
1 ½ cups chopped cabbage (optional)

225g elbow macaroni (can be substituted with any similar pasta)
1½ cup thick cream
Salt and pepper to taste

Grated/shredded cheese (optional topping)

Instructions:

Heat water in a pot. Add chicken and salt. Let boil until chicken is thoroughly cooked.

While the chicken is cooking, melt butter in a separate pan. Sauté onion and garlic until they are cooked, then add carrot, celery and cabbage. Cook for about 3 minutes.

Remove the chicken from the pot once cooked, but let the pot remain on the stove. Cook pasta in the same water and pot for 10 minutes.

Quickly shred cooked chicken into strips. Add chicken, ham and chicken cube into the pan with the veggies. Cook for 2 minutes.

When the pasta is almost cooked, carefully add the veggie-chicken mixture into the pot containing the pasta. Stir well.

Add cream, salt and pepper into the soup. Cook for about 2 minutes. Be careful not to get the pasta overcooked. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with grated cheese on top.


It’s best to eat this soup in one sitting, otherwise the pasta will absorb the soup and become bloated and dry by the next meal time.

However, if you are time or energy poor (as many of us are) and wish to prepare this soup for two meals, but don’t want to compromise the quality of the cooked pasta, prepare the dish as is, BUT cook only half of the pasta required. Then, add only half of the veggie-chicken mixture and cream to the cooking pasta, reserving the other half for the next meal.

For the next meal, boil the remaining pasta, then add the reserved half of the veggie-chicken mixture when the pasta is almost cooked. Add the remaining cream and season according to taste.

Curried Carrot Soup

Don’t you just love a bowl of warm vegetarian soup on these cold Australian winter evenings? Ooh, and pair that with crusty bread fresh out of the oven. Yum!

Here’s one of those delicious vegetarian soup recipes you might want to try. Quite easy to prepare and will be ready in less than an hour.

Carrot Soup

CURRIED CARROT SOUP

Olive oil
1 brown onion, chopped
5 cloves of garlic, crushed
500 g carrots, chopped (approx. 7-8 medium sized)
1 potato, chopped
1 Tbsp curry powder
100g split red lentils, washed
2 vegetable stock cubes
2 cups water
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
1 lime

Heat oil in a saucepan. Sauté onion and garlic over medium heat for around 5 minutes, stirring constantly.  Add carrots, potato and curry powder. Stir well.  Add lentils, stock cubes, water, salt and black pepper. Stir well to dissolve the cubes, while allowing to boil. Simmer over low heat for approximately 25 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for a bit.

Transfer soup to a blender and process until smooth. Then, return soup to saucepan to reheat.  Drizzle gently with juice and grated rind of lime, before serving with warm crusty bread.  Enjoy your yummy soup!

Bamboo Shoots and Prawns In Coconut Milk

This dish is one of our favourites. It’s quite easy and quick to prepare, and it’s mostly veggies in it…except for the prawns. This is a lovely soup to pair with hot Jasmine rice on a winter evening, but really, you can enjoy this dish at anytime of the year.

Ingredients: 
1 small brown onion, chopped
1 small can (125g) corn kernels
1 small can (165mL) premium coconut milk
6 pcs okras, sliced to 1-inch lengths
1 can (225g) bamboo shoot slices
12 – 18 pcs prawns
Sliced crabs (or 1 tsp red crab paste)
Jute leaves (cos lettuce may also be used as substitute)
3 cups water
Salt, sugar and pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper, ground (optional)

Procedure:

In a saucepan, boil prawns and crabs in water with onions until they’re red.  Add bamboo shoots and corn. Boil for 2 minutes. Add okras.  Stir in coconut milk and cook for about 3 minutes or until the soup is slimy from the okra. Add jute leaves and season. Simmer for one minute.  Serve hot with rice.