Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Burmese Soup

Well we've finally made it Burma (in a virtual sense that is ... in our round-the-world cooking adventure) and we decided to cook some Chickpea Soup. You can see the soup being cooked in the traditional way by the Shan people in this video (the video is so interesting and well worth the time to watch it - my favourite part is when the camera looks down and you can see the river and the boat through the floor boards).

Chickpea Soup is cooked in several different pots and then assembled at the last minute.  You can see all the parts ready to be ladled into bowls in the photo below.  It may look like a lot of pots to clean, but they mostly had vegetables or noodles so they cleaned up quickly.  The key to this soup is using enough of the spice mixture that goes on top as that is what makes the soup so interesting and flavourful.  

This was one of our favourite dishes from our world cooking adventure (do I say that every time?).  It was so delicious we've already made it a few times.  

Here's the recipe with the modifications we made:

1 can chickpeas, drained
1 litre water
4 tbsp oil
¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 cm ginger, peeled, pounded (or 1 teaspoon ground ginger)
3 tomatoes, diced (or 1/2 can diced tomatoes)
1 tsp paprika powder
Pinch of salt
2 chicken skinless boneless chicken breasts
400g rice noodles, blanched
200g blanched baby bok choy
2 cups bean sprouts
4 teaspoon sesame seeds
teaspoon crushed roasted peanuts
teaspoon fried garlic
teaspoon light soy sauce
teaspoon sugar cane syrup
Sliced green onion, to garnish
Dried chilli flakes, to garnish
Lime wedges, to garnish (although we used lemon)


1.  We mashed the chickpeas using a mortar and pestle, but next time I would just boil them and then mash with a potato masher.
2. Combine the mashed chickpeas and water in a pot and bring to a boil.  Cook on low, stirring occasionally for 15 minutes.
3.  Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan over medium heat.
 Sauté the turmeric powder, onion, garlic and ginger, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the onions are translucent.
4. Add the tomatoes, paprika powder, salt and chicken. Stir-fry for 10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Remove from heat and set aside.
5.  Prepare the noodles according to package directions.
6.  Blanch the bok choy for 2 minutes in boiling water.
7.  Combine the sesame seeds, peanuts, fried garlic, soy sauce, and sugar cane syrup in a bowl to season the soup.
8. To serve, divide noodles among 4 soup bowls. Ladle the chickpea mixture over the noodles. Add some tomato-chicken mixture.  Add the baby bok choy and bean sprouts.  Top with the seasoning mixture made in step #7. Garnish with the spring onion, chilli flakes and lime. 

We have already cooked dishes from Thailand and Cambodia so I hope to have them posted soon too.  Have you ever cooked any South Asian food?  I'm really enjoying the food from this part of the world.

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  1. Oh my gosh! That soup looks so good! My family would love that soup! I bet it smells delicious too! I pinned it! Angie xo

  2. Grace this looks so delicious (and healthy) I love to try new recipes from all different cultures!

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