GREEN COCONUT VEGGIE NOODLE BOWL

If I had to choose one single cuisine for the rest of my life, it would definitely be the Thai cuisine. Although I love a huge array of international foods and flavors, I feel that the Thai kitchen combines most of the flavors that I adore while remaining fresh and light at all times. Don’t get me wrong, my heart will still melt for some Persian or German food but I have to admit, it’s heavy and since I was blessed with my UC, I have to be careful about what I eat all the time. While I love eating out, especially when it’s authentic Thai food, I also love to cook myself - duh – and come up with recipes that resemble Thai dishes but with a personal twist. For example anything that is heavily spiced is unfortunately not so good for me and my tummy, so I try to come up with solutions that are still flavorful yet light and easily digestible. One of my all time favorite dishes is curry. I love it in all kinds of ways but I love green curry the most. Of course it’s the spiciest of all too haha which on the other hand is not so good for me. Maybe it’s also the lovely green color that I’m attracted to. Anyway, since it started to snow again this weekend - booooh!! – I really felt like a cozy Sunday evening on the couch with a huge bowl of a warming soup. I would never, NEVER EVER opt for a store bought soup, just because I feel lazy. So I got my booty of the couch, at least for a short period of time, and started working on what ended up as a GREEN COCONUT VEGGIE NOODLE BOWL. Btw, this is my first blog post in English because I received so many emails from you lovely people asking me if I could translate. And since most of my fellow Germans speak great English, i figured I might as well switch completely! 

First off I started making a delicious base of the soup. The broth. You can make a veggie broth ahead of time and freeze it in small portions like in an ice tray and then once they’re frozen, put them in a zipper plastic baggy. That way every time you need some broth you can take a few frozen broth cubes out and melt them as you need them. You can also use store bought organic veggie broth but make sure to read what’s in it. You want something that comes close to what you would make at home: water, vegetables, herbs and a few spices. Simple! I started by melting lightly sautéing some shallots in coconut oil, then adding the spices and stirring them well so they don’t burn. You just want the spices to get sort of rejuvenated by the heat. Then I added the broth, a can of good coconut milk and my secret ingredient smashed pineapple to the pot and let everything come to a boil. Lower the heat and let the coconut broth and the spices marry and “steep” for about 10-15 minutes, that way you get an aromatic base. I love how the sweetness of the pineapple adds another dimension of flavor. While that is happening, you just simply chop up all your veggies and cook the rice noodles. Make sure to undercook the noodles a tiny bit, sort of like al dente, because otherwise they will get mushy in the soup. Add the veggies to the broth and let it cook for just a few minutes and then assemble the bowls with some soup, a good squeeze of fresh lime and the puréed cilantro. That’s what makes my coconut soup green 🙂 Lean back and enjoy this super light yet deeply flavored soup on a cold Sunday eve. You can also make the coconut broth ahead of time and put it in a large glass jar along with some thinly sliced veggies and take it to work for a fast and nutritious lunch. Simply pop it in the microwave for a few minutes without the lid and once it’s nice and hot take it out and add some fresh herbs to it. Believe me, your co-workers will be super jealous!

INGREDIENTS {makes 2 huge and 4 small bowls}

 

2 shallots {thinly sliced}

1 Tbsp coconut oil

Galangal 2 cm {sliced}

Ginger 2 cm {sliced}

1 stalk of lemongrass {beaten with the back of a knife}

3-4 kaffir lime leaves

1Tsp ground coriander

1 Tsp ground cumin

1|4 Tsp ground ground cinnamon or 1 cinnamon stalk

1|2 Tsp ground turmeric

3 Tbsp soy sauce {organic and gluten free if possible}

400 ml| 1 can coconut milk {please use a good organic brand}

500 ml vegetable broth {homemade or organic store bought}

200 ml vegetable broth or water {optional | depends on how dense the coconut milk is}

1|4 of a pineapple smashed {pulse a few times in a blender}

1 medium size sweet potato {peeled and sliced}

1-2 carrots {peeled and thinly sliced lengthwise with a vegetable peeler}

3 baby pak choy {sliced up to the leafs}

Handful of sugar snap peas {sliced}

1 package of enoki mushrooms

A large bunch of coriander

Juice of 1 lime

Black sesame seeds {optional}

Chili {optional}

 

METHOD

 

1| Thinly slice the shallots and sautée them in the heated coconut oil until lightly golden. Add the sliced galangal, ginger, the lemongrass stalk and the spices and keep stirring for about one minute.

 

2| Deglaze the pot with the broth and coconut milk. If necessary add more broth or water to thin out the mixture.

 

3| Add the smashed pineapple, kaffir lime leaves and soy sauce. Let the coconut broth mixture simmer for 10-15 minutes for all the flavors to marry.

 

4| Add the sweet potatoes and cook for a few minutes. They don’t take very long.

 

5| Cook the rice noodles until al dente, drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.

 

6| Peel the carrots and slice them lengthwise with a vegetable peeler. Cut the stems off of the enoki mushrooms and rinse them with cold water. Set aside.

 

7| Take the washed coriander and mix it in a blender with a little bit of the broth until you have a thin pesto. Set aside.

 

8| Add the baby pak choy except for the leaves and sugar snap peas and cook for a couple minutes.

 

9| Pour some of the coriander pesto in the bowls, add the carrots, mushrooms, noodles and pak choy leaves and pour some hot soup over it all. Squeeze some fresh lime juice over each bowl. Sprinkle sesame seeds and chili on top if desired.

 

10| Lean back and enjoy!

 

TIP

 

I added the coriander purée and the soup to the bowsl first, then added the noodles, pak choy leaves and carrots so it looks more decorative. That’s totally up to you though!

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