Thai Chicken Soup with "Chimichurri"

>> Tuesday, April 26, 2011

I know, I know, chimichurri is Argentinian not Thai. But I made a pork tenderloin with chimichurri last week (which was very good - here's that recipe) and I was still thinking about it when I was planning the menu for this week. Inspiration hit! I decided to make a Thai chicken soup and instead of putting all the herbs and flavors into the soup - where they get diluted and fall into the background - I decided to make a Thai chimichurri-style sauce to spoon on top of the soup. Not only does it look beautiful, the flavors really shine!

To make this recipe more authentic, you could add lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, red curry and replace the basil with Thai basil and the jalapeno with a red Thai chili. It would be really good with shrimp too. I was just using what I had on hand or in my garden. Just keeping it real!

Thai Chicken Soup with "Chimichurri"
for the soup
1 T olive oil or butter
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 8-oz package fresh mushrooms, sliced
1-inch piece of ginger, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 5-oz package of fresh spinach
8 c chicken broth
2 chicken breasts, cooked and thinly sliced or shredded
1 14-oz can coconut milk
salt and pepper, to taste
cooked rice, for serving

for the "chimichurri"
3/4 c fresh herbs - basil, cilantro, mint - minced (total quantity, not 3/4 c each)
2 green onions, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced (optional)
1 lime, zest and juice
1 garlic clove, minced
2 t ginger, grated
1 T rice wine vinegar
1/4 c olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

In a small bowl, combine all ingredients for the sauce. Mix well. Refrigerate until ready to use.

In a large pot over medium heat, add olive oil. Add red bell pepper, mushrooms, ginger and garlic. Saute, stirring often, for a few minutes, or until the mushrooms start to brown slightly. Add the spinach and saute for a minute so that it just starts to wilt. Add the broth, chicken and season with salt and pepper. Let cook over medium heat for about 15 minutes. Lower the heat and stir in the coconut milk. To serve, place cooked rice in the bottom of a soup bowl, cover with soup and top with a generous spoonful of the chimichurri.


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