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Thai Chicken Biryani Soup

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  • Thai Chicken Biryani Soup

    A couple of years ago I visited Bangladesh. It's an astonishingly poor country, but I fell in love there- with the food. Granted, I was not living the life "of the people" rather I was leading a charmed life in comparison to 99% of the population. But this is where I found biryani. Flying out of Bangladesh, I spent a few nights in Bangkok. Visiting a spice shop there, I bought bottles of biryani powder. Ingredients list: turmeric, cinnamon, coriander seed, bay leaves, mix spice (I hope this doesn't mean MSG). This pre-made biryani spice was my inspiration. The thigh decision was inspired by the thread on this forum. =)

    -Chicken thigh. Mine was boneless, skinless but not necessary of course. I cut the thigh into 3 to 4 inch sections.
    -Coat with biryani spice, pressing the spice into the meat.
    -Quickly pan fry the thigh pieces in coconut oil, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Do not crowd.
    -Put all thigh pieces back into same pan, cover about halfway with coconut milk, add 1/4 to 1/3 c. heavy cream, also add more biryani spice to liquid to taste (I added 1-2 tablespoons), salt, veggies at this time.
    -Reduce heat to low simmer. Cover. Cook about 30 more minutes, turning thigh pieces once or twice.
    -Prior to serving, cut the chicken into bite size pieces. Serve in a bowl.

    Veggies: the only one I added was shallots, but I didn't intentionally shun veggies, I just hadn't been to the store yet. Next time I make this, I will add sliced peppers, julienned carrots and bamboo shoots.

    Sorry I didn't take a picture but I hadn't really planned that it would turn out so delicious. Also, because I didn't add veggies, it just looked like yellow-y soup with chicken bits.

    The flavor combo of dark meat chicken thighs, biryani, coconut milk and heavy cream is HEAVENLY.
    Because if you didn't know, of that is life made: only of moments; Don't lose the now.
    ~Borges

  • #2
    That sounds amazing!!

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    • #3
      Holy cow! Now THIS is my idea of a good time. I love south/southeast Asian food and, as a beginner cook, find it easy and fun to prepare.
      "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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      • #4
        Most likely, I'm gonna make it again this weekend with veggies and will post a pic. I'm salivating just thinking about it.
        Because if you didn't know, of that is life made: only of moments; Don't lose the now.
        ~Borges

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        • #5
          YUM.
          Please oh please post a pic

          I do South Asian food all the time, but it never occurred to me to use Biryani spices with coconut milk.
          Sounds like a lovely combination of two awesome cuisines!

          ETA: Especially since I don't make Biryani anymore---I have a crap-ton of cloves and bay leaves, etc. that are just sitting there

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          • #6
            Alrighteee, so I made it again and added veggies this time. I actually liked it better the first time without veggies; I think that's because last time I cooked it for a decent while (maybe 45+ min) and it really condensed the liquid. This time, I added the veggies a few minutes after the coconut milk/hwc but I only kept it cooking 30 minutes in order to avoid mushy veggies. Still mighty tasty. This time it reminded me a bit more of tom ka gai.

            Because if you didn't know, of that is life made: only of moments; Don't lose the now.
            ~Borges

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            • #7
              Mmmmmmmmmmmmm.......
              Thanks for the porn

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              • #8
                Man, I haven't had breakfast so now I'm drooling here at my computer...

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                • #9
                  That looks amazing say-rahhh! Biryani is my absolute favorite dish! Moreso if it's made with goat meat. Your soup seems like a perfect way to taste the flavors without the rice. Thanks for the inspiration.

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                  • #10
                    Thanks, maba! I was nervous about what you'd say if you did comment- I was hoping you wouldn't think I'd created an abomination.

                    Goat....I've only had goat meat in the Philippines and I wasn't too keen on it, although it could have been the prep.
                    Because if you didn't know, of that is life made: only of moments; Don't lose the now.
                    ~Borges

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                    • #11
                      We've got a winner right here! Ooooh, this is SO good!

                      I used my dutch oven: browned the chicken in it, then built from there.

                      Vegetables I added: onions (browned with the chicken), broccoli, green beans, and carrots. I also had some remaining chicken stock that needed to be used up pronto, so that went in as well. Cauliflower would be great for next time.

                      I found the biryani paste at my local Kroger affiliate (too lazy/intimidated to make from scratch); I'm certain it can be gotten much cheaper at an Indian food store, but mine is way over on the far side of town.
                      "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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                      • #12
                        Yeah!! I'm too intimidated to make biryani spice from scratch too.

                        You should post a pic....
                        Because if you didn't know, of that is life made: only of moments; Don't lose the now.
                        ~Borges

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                        • #13
                          Just looks so yummy even after I ate my dinner...I can already taste it!
                          During breakfast today, Abby asks, "How would this juicy, fat, sweet blackberry taste on top of my bacon?" I said it would taste BerrySwine...;-P

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                          • #14
                            we eat curries a lot in the UK - always being blamed for rise in obesity etc (take-aways from the Indian restaurants - in fact we have more of those than you have of burger places!)

                            Of course, we primals are in the know that the pilau rice, nan bread, pappadums (lentil flour) and chippatis are probably what do the damage!

                            But you can learn a lot from Indian cooking - take Sag aloo for example (normally made with potatoes) you could substitut squash or sweet potato instead.


                            Ingredients: (serves 4)

                            60g / 2Ľoz butter or ghee
                            5cm / 2in piece root ginger, peeled and grated
                            4 garlic cloves, chopped
                            2 onions, chopped
                            2 green chillies, chopped
                            200g / 7oz squash/swt potato, peeled and cut into 5cm / 2in pieces
                            1 tsp ground cumin
                            1 tsp ground coriander
                            ˝ tsp turmeric
                            Ľ tsp salt
                            500g / 1lb 2oz spinach leaves, rinsed and chopped (you can also use frozen spinach, defrosted)
                            pinch garam masala

                            Melt butter or ghee in large saucepan over medium heat. Fry ginger, garlic, onions and chillies, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes.

                            Add **squash/swt potato and continue stirring for 5 minutes. Then add cumin, coriander, turmeric and salt. Continue frying and stirring for 15 minutes, or until squash/swt pot are tender. I found that everything really stuck to the base of the pan unless I stirred non-stop. If this happens, add a little vegetable oil rather than more butter.

                            Throw in the spinach at the very end. You want it to stay nice and fresh, so take the saucepan off the heat after you’ve stirred it in, as it will continue to cook for a while with the heat from the squash/swt pot.

                            Sprinkle garam masala over and serve hot


                            I swear, curry almost takes on healing powers, especially when the chicken is melting tender...it's the best comfort food and the spices themselves have "healing" properties. Allegedly.
                            Last edited by queen_sheba; 08-24-2010, 09:27 AM.
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                            • #15
                              OK, this little beauty is in heavy rotation at my house. I've made it with all sorts of veggie combinations, and I've perfected it to: onions, cauliflower, carrots, green beans, and baby bella mushrooms. I do everything up in my Dutch oven, so I only use one pot. Freezes well.

                              I have found Biryani paste in a jar at my Kroger affiliate, but it wasn't at my Safeway or WinCo (my area's no-frills, cement-floored, you-bag-yourself-in-exchange-for-low-prices grocery). For sure it can be found at an Indian store and at a much better price. Or you can make up the spice mix yourself, of course.
                              "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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