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Thai Coconut Chicken Soup

Thai Coconut Chicken Soup

1 t canola oil
3 lemongrass stalks, tough outer leaves removed, bottom 5" halves lengthwise and sliced thin crosswise
3 shallots, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
8 sprigs fresh cilantro, chopped
3 T fish sauce
4 c chicken broth (if you do not have homemade, use Swansons)
1 can coconut milk, well shaken
1 T sugar
1/2 lb white mushrooms, sliced
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved lengthwise and sliced on the bias 1/8" thick
3 T lime juice
2 t Thai red curry paste

1/2 c fresh cilantro leaves
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 lime, cut into wedges

1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until just shimmering. Add the lemongrass, shallots, cilantro and 1 T of the fish sauce. Cook 2-3 minutes until just softened. The vegetables should not brown. Stir in the broth and 1/2 can of coconut milk. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer about 10 minutes until the flavors have blended. Pour broth through a fine mesh strainer. Discard the solids in the strainer. Rinse the saucepan and return the broth to the pan.
2. Return the pan to medium high heat. Stir in the remaining 1/2 can of coconut milk and sugar into the broth mixture. When this begins to simmer, reduce the heat to medium and add the mushrooms. Cook until mushrooms are just tender, 2-3 minutes. Add the chicken and cook, stirring constantly, until no longer pink, 1-3 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat.
3. Combine the lime juice, curry paste and remaining 2 T fish sauce in a small bowl. Stir into the soup until well blended. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with cilantro and scallions. Serve immediately with lime wedges. Serves 4.

Recipe by Miko Ryan

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