Chinese Rice Soup Bowl

Autumn is here! Ok granted, according to CMs learning calendar Autumn actually starts in September and lasts for 3 months, but the weather has been so mild that I’ve had to keep delaying this post – well that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it! Actually the real reason for my blog silence is that the last couple of months has been a period of big change. New routine for the kids, new job for me and it really didn’t help that I got completely addicted to Our Girl, Mistresses (US version of course) and the boxed set of Breaking Bad that’s been on my shelf for the last 2 years! But that’s all in the past now. I am now completely settled in my new routine (I wish) and have quit my TV addiction (well as soon as GBBO finishes this week) and will be back more regularly (who am I kidding).

But back to Autumn. It’s here and I love it. I bore you with the same thing this time every year but there really is something about saying goodbye to our unpredictable British summer that I like. Crisp, fresh air, golden leaves and the last rays of sun. Sadly over the last few years the open fires, goblets of plummy red wine and movie nights have been replaced with microwaveable wheat packs, decaf tea and early nights but the romanticism of Autumn still gets me every year.

But more than anything it’s the food I love. I’m a food traditionalist. None of this new age clean eating for me (although I read a number of articles in The Pool today about just how bad all this new fangled gluten-free-make-food-as-boring-as-you-can-paleo-stuff can be so I am feeling very smug). Although I do dabble in the odd bit of quinoa and rainbow chard it’s comfort food all the way for me. And a big part of that is soup. It may sound odd to some that soup could be a whole meal but if it’s made right these one-pot wonders can be everything you could wish for. Warming, filling, healthy and super speedy for a weeknight supper. This Chinese Rice Bowl Soup is a new invention for me. I freshened up my traditional chicken noodle soup by substituting the noodles for rice and some chicken gyoza cooked and placed on top just give it a little extra something. Ok granted it means it’s no longer a one-pot meal but sometimes a little bit of luxury can make all the difference.

Chinese Rice Bowl Soup (serves 2-3 |total prep and cooking time 30 mins)

chinese-rice-soup-bowl

Ingredients
– wok/stir fry oilfor frying
– 1 small onion – diced
– 3-4 cloves of garlic – finely chopped
– 1 inch piece of ginger – finely chopped
– 1/2 small chilli – finely chopped
– pinch Chinese 5 spice
– tablespoon soy sauce
– 1-2 skinless chicken breast fillet or 2-3 skinless thigh fillets
– chicken stock cube dissolved in approx 500ml water. Have more boiling water ready
– 3 handfuls of rice (sorry that’s just how I measure it)
– approx. 6 mushrooms – quartered or slices
– other vegetables e.g. brocolli, green beans, mange tout, peas
– tablespoon chopped coriander
Method
– heat the oil in a deep saucepan
– fry the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli until softened
– add the five spice and stir
– add the chicken breast, stock, soy sauce and toasted sesame oil. Stir and bring to the boil
– simmer and cook for approx. 20 mins until the chicken is cooked
– remove the chicken breast
– add the rice to the pan
– slice or shred the meat and take it off the bone (if there is one) and then return it to the pan
– add the mushrooms, other vegetables and coriander and stir
– add more boiling water depending on how watery you like your soup
– cook for approx. 10 mins or until the rice is cooked
– cook gyoza according to packet instructions and place on top

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