A roast chicken dinner is a real family favourite but the leftovers can be the best part sometimes. This Thai Chicken Noodle Soup is tasty, fresh and light whilst also being a satisfying supper. I also love it if I’ve got a cold as it gives you a great kick with the ginger!
Lemon Roast Chicken
The great thing about this roast chicken is the lack of chopping or prep you need to do while it still delivers on great flavour. This is a great gravy too!
1 lemon cut in half
3 or 4 sprigs of herbs, such as thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, parsley (your choice)
Salt and pepper to season
Preheat the oven to 200˚C/fan 180˚C/gas mark 6.
Place the chicken in a roasting dish, place half the lemon and some herbs inside the cavity and rub a little olive oil all over the skin. Season with salt and pepper.
Cook in the oven for 1½ to 2 hours until cooked through – the best way to check this is to put a large fork into the cavity and hold the chicken up carefully. If the juices run clear then it is cooked. Place the chicken in a warm place to rest before serving, reserving the juices in the roasting dish.
Squeeze the juice of the other half of the lemon into the roasting juices.
Make the roux by melting the butter in a pot over a medium heat. Add the flour, combine and cook for 5 minutes. Add a tablespoon of the roux to the juices in the roasting dish over a high heat whisking vigorously. Allow to come to the boil. The juices should have thickened to give a good consistency, but add a little more of the roux if it is still too liquid for your liking. If it has become too thick, add a couple of tablespoons of hot water.
Serve with roast potatoes and roast cauliflower à la Kristiina.
Classic Roast Potatoes
This is my method for crispy on the outside, fluffy in the centre potatoes. Make sure you time these to be served straight from the oven, in other words, giving your meat time to rest. All you need is potatoes and rapeseed oil. I am not giving quantities for the potatoes as it depends on how many people you are cooking for and how many potatoes you like. If you are doing a lot, you may need to increase the amount of oil. I am glutton for roast potatoes. They are also great to make leftover potato hash with.
2–3 tablespoons rapeseed oil
Preheat the oven to 200˚C/fan 180˚C/gas mark 6.
Peel the potatoes and cut into even size chunks. Place in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and allow to cook for about 3 minutes.
In the meantime, pour the rapeseed oil into an ovenproof dish big enough for the amount of potatoes you are doing and place in the oven.
Empty the boiled potatoes into a colander and place a clean tea towel over them. Holding the tea towel over the colander in the sink, give them a good shake to bash up the edges. This will help to make them lovely and crispy.
Carefully put the potatoes into the preheated oil. The oil should be good and hot and you should hear a little sizzle when you put the potatoes in. Brush the potatoes with some of the oil, making sure all of the potatoes are well coated.
Roast for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, shaking every now and then to ensure they brown evenly.
Roast Tabasco Cauliflower à la Kristiina
This recipe was a revelation for me when the lovely Kristiina made it for our family Sunday roast. It is so easy and has become a staple in our house.
1 head of cauliflower cut into bite-sized florets
Preheat the oven to 180˚C /fan160˚C/gas mark 4.
Put the cauliflower in a roasting dish and sprinkle as much Tabasco over as you want, depending on how spicy you like it.
Drizzle with a little olive oil, season with salt and roast for 15–20 minutes or until soft or al dente, depending on how you like it.
Thai Chicken Noodle Broth
One of my favourite winter warmers, I crave this when I am sick with a cold or flu, or simply a bit tired and stressed. I am not mad about the term ‘clean eating’ but it does describe this pretty well. This is a great way to use up leftover roast chicken if you have it, but if you don’t you can use chicken fillets as per the recipe below. If you have roast chicken left over, simply shred it and add it in for the last minute of cooking to heat it through.
750ml chicken or vegetable stock
1 chicken fillet, sliced into bite-sized pieces
1 tablespoon nam pla (Thai fish sauce)
Juice of 1 lime or lemon
1 clove of garlic, finely sliced
1 large piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
1 nest of medium egg noodles
3 handfuls of mixed vegetables (e.g. baby sweetcorn, mangetout, pak choi, spinach, peppers, sugar snaps, beansprouts)
1 fresh red chilli, sliced (optional)
A small bunch of coriander or flat-leaf parsley, chopped
2 spring onions, sliced
Put the stock into a large pot and bring to the boil. Place the chicken, nam pla, lime/lemon juice, garlic and ginger into it and poach over a medium heat for 3–4 minutes or until the chicken has turned white. Make sure the water is not boiling too hard or the chicken will break up.
Add the noodles and the harder vegetables, such as the corn (if using) and peppers. Poach for another 3–4 minutes.
Remove a large piece of chicken and slice in half to check that it is cooked through. If it is cooked, switch off the heat.
Add the leafy greens and any other vegetables you are using and stir through. Taste for balance between the citrus juice and nam pla. Adjust to your liking by adding more nam pla if necessary.
Ladle into bowls, ensuring a good mix of all the ingredients with poaching liquid. When serving, sprinkle with the chilli (if using), herbs and spring onions.