Sunday, 22 January 2012

Asian-style salmon noodle soup

It's January - and what better to stave off the chilly gloomy weather than a bowl of spicy noodle soup with Chinese-spiced salmon? This is Jamie Oliver's Asian-style salmon, from his 30 Minute Meals book, which is excellent I have to say for meal ideas. It's probably the one cook book I tend to use the most, cooking for two people. And while it isn't a 30-minute wonder, it is pretty quick on the kitchen timer.
The slurpy nature of the broth and the saltiness of the soy sauce is gorgeous against the meatiness of the salmon and the crunchy veg, you just have to attack this bowl with a fork/chopsticks and prepare yourself to get it everywhere. Ideally eaten while watching Sherlock on the sofa (as long as you don't spill anything.) I tend to over-do the soy sauce, because I'm a flavour-addict but feel free to vary this depending on how much like!
Adapted for 2 people - lots of sauce to cook the salmon and big flavour for the broth. 

Asian-style salmon noodle soup
The salmon

  • 2 pieces of salmon (or other fish)
  • 2cm piece of ginger (peeled and chopped - use a teaspoon to peel ginger, way easier than anything else!)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (peeled)
  • 1 small red onion (roughly chopped)
  • 1/2 red chilli (roughly chopped)
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 limes
  • Chinese five-spice (at the herbs/spices section)
The broth
  • 4 spring onions (chopped)
  • 1 red chilli (diced)
  • 1 cm piece of ginger (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 tsp five spice
  • 1 tbsp cornflour - normal flour will also do, but cornflour is an excellent thickener. 
  • 1 clove garlic (peeled)
  • 450ml (ish) vegetable stock
  • 150g sugar snap peas or mange tout
  • 100g egg noodles (one of those noodle nests would do well - use 200g if you're both ravenous)
  • Soy sauce (to taste)
Salmon ready for the oven
First, you need to make the syrupy sauce that the salmon gets coated in, which is then baked in the oven. Preheat your oven to 200C, and then add into a food processer or blender the roughly chopped onion and ginger. Crush in the garlic, and the roughly chopped chilli, the juice of the two limes and the soy sauce. Whizz it all up till it looks pinky and gloopy.

Put the salmon on a chopping board and score it lightly, and rub in some Chinese five-spice with some salt and pepper, then put skin side up in a small oven-proof dish so they fit snugly. Pour over the gloopy sauce, and put in the oven for 20m.

You can start on the broth now - heat a little olive oil in a big saucepan, and add your chopped spring onion and red chilli, and crush your two cloves of garlic into the pan. Add the ginger, then fry lightly, stirring often and keeping an eye on your garlic to ensure it won't burn. Get your vegetable stock ready.

With your vegetable stock on hand, add one tsp of Chinese five-spice, and three tsp of cornflour. Stir, so it gets a little paste-y, then add your vegetable stock and stir so that it melts the blobs of flour. Then add your sugar-snap peas. Bring to a boil, taste, and then add a glug soy sauce - keep tasting, as you add. Add the noodles, then put the lid on and leave on a simmer for five minutes. Check the salmon - it should be cooked through and smelling delicious.
And you're done - divide the noodles and broth between bowls, and add a piece of salmon on top, spooning over that pink gloopy loveliness to finish. Enjoy!

Credit: Jamie Oliver's 30 Minute Meals
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