Wednesday, 11 November 2015

SHL Free Range Organic Chicken Soup

Once in a while, when I entertain guests at the farm, I will cook based on our farm produce.  At a recent gathering, I decided to do my version of the chicken soup featuring our chicken.  Cooking free range chicken is different than cooking "cooped up" chickens as free range chickens do not have soft flabby meat and tastes great when cooked with herbs and spices and will result in tender chicken meat.
To start with, we have fresh chicken which we will place over open flame for a few seconds to remove all the fine "hairs" left after the feathers have been plucked.  Cut the chicken into 10 pieces, separating them at the joints and the chicken breast is cut into 4 pieces.
Rinse them well to remove any unwanted innards left.  Place in a drainer and let the water drain off.

The ingredients I use to flavour the soup are:

  1. Fresh tumeric (kunyit hidup)
  2. Fresh small galangal (lengkuas kecil)
  3. Kaffir lime leaves (daun lima pert)
  4. Lemon grass (Serai)
  5. White basil (selasih putih)
  6. Fresh ginger (halia)
  7. Star Anise (bunga lawang)
  8. Cloves (Cengkih)
  9. Coarse salt (garam kasar)
  10. Big red onion (bawang merah besar)
  11. Yellow onion (bawang kuning besar)
  12. Garlic (bawling putih)
  13. Chopped celery (saldri)
  14. Chopped carrots (lobak merah)
  15. Fresh bay leaves (daun salam)
When I cook dishes like this, I am pretty much old school which means I do not use a blender but prefer to use mortar and pestle.  I use olive oil and heat it up and add the onions which have been pound coarsely.  Next I will pound ginger, galangal and tumeric and add it to the pot once the onion has been cooked until it is translucent.  After allowing it to cook for a few minutes, I will add the white basil, bay leaves and kaffir lime leaves which I pound to just break it up a bit.  After 1 minute or so, I will add the garlic which has been pound to a relative fine consistency and follow it with Carrots, celery star anise and cloves.  I add the chicken to the pot and stir it around and add water followed by the lemon grass stalks which I just fund the ends.  I bring the mixture to a boil and then slow the heat to allow it to simmer for about 1 hour.  I add salt and turn off the heat.  The soup is ready.

My choice of the seasoning is based on the goodness that I want the soup to have apart from having it taste good.  This soup can be served on its own, eaten with rice or as the gravy for noodles.  So, there it is - our version of free range organic chicken soup which results in tender chicken meat and tasty soup filled with nutrients :)