Coconut Soup with Sugarcane Chicken Quennelles

Coconut Soup with Sugarcane Chicken Quennelles
Coconut Soup:
2 cups Soup Base, recipe follows
1 cup coconut milk
6-8 Kaffir lime leaves
Salt and pepper
Fresh lime juice, to taste
2-3 teaspoons date palm sugar, to taste

Sugarcane Chicken Quennelles, recipe below

1 ounce glass noodles -- soaked in warm water until soft
1/4 cup carrots, cut into juliennes
1/4 cup leeks, cut into juliennes
4 Thai chiles, made into flowers (split into quarters but not through the stem, place in ice water for 20 minutes)
4 Kaffir lime leaves, slivered finely, remove center stem

Soup Base:
2 1/2 cups lobster stock*
1 tablespoon chile paste
1 lemon grass, cut into 2" lengths
10 fresh Thai basil leaves (bai Horpha)
2 Thai Dragon chiles
*make from stock base mix or from boiling lobster shells

Sugarcane Chicken Quennelles:
4 ounces minced (ground) chicken breast
1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon galangal or baby ginger, minced
1 teaspoon mushroom soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon fish sauce (nam pla)
2 teaspoons rice flour
freshly ground white pepper to taste
8 inch stalks of fresh sugarcane

Place cubes of chicken breast into food processor, pulse until meat is minced.

In a mixing bowl, combine the minced chicken, garlic, galangal, soy sauce, fish
sauce, rice flour and white pepper. Mix until well blended.

Divide into 8 even portions.
Form the chicken quennelle mixture around the end of each sugarcane stick using a cupped hand to press the mixture firmly and smoothly into place.

Set aside

For soup:

Make the soup base, add the coconut milk and kaffir lime leaves. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to barely a simmer.

For Soup Base:
Place the lobster stock in a saucepan over medium high heat, add the chile paste, lemon grass, Thai basil leaves and Thai Dragon chile and bring to a boil. Reduce until only 2 cups remain.

Taste and adjust seasoning with fish sauce, pepper, lime juice and sugar. Remembering Thai cuisine is about balance. You don't want to taste hot, sweet, salty or sour - just the combination of these Thai flavours.

Add the sugarcane quennelles and simmer until done, about 3 minutes.

Divide the softened glass noodles into 4 soup bowls.

Place two dumplings in each bowl across the noodles but leaning the sugar cane stalks up the side of the bowl.

Divide the soup into the four bowls.

Garnish each bowl with the carrot and leek juilennes, Thai chile flowers and lime leaf slivers.

Serve immediately.

Serves 4

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