- Full of spices and flavor, this is fabulous soup.
- I mean, what's more comforting than chicken soup?
It's like comfort in a pot.
- Texture, flavor.
- You're definitely going to get exactly what you're looking for.
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ - This week on Milk Street, we travel the world in search of new ideas for weeknight soups, starting with Turkish wedding soup, which is rich with meat, potatoes, and handfuls of herbs, to a chicken and lime soup from the Yucatan, and, finally, a Filipino-style chicken soup with coconut and lemongrass.
Please stay tuned for a fresh, bold take on a midweek classic: soup.
- Funding for this series was provided by the following.
- That meal.
You sautéed, you seared, and you served, cooking with All-Clad, bonded cookware designed, engineered, and assembled in the U.S.A. for over 50 years.
All-Clad: for all your kitchen adventures.
♪ ♪ (indistinct talking) (silverware clinking) - (speaking Turkish): (laughs) ♪ ♪ - Turkish wedding soup is not actually served at Turkish weddings.
It's a homemade recipe.
And I took the ferry from Istanbul for ten or 15 minutes across the Bosporus to Anatolia, and we went to someone's home.
Her name is Emine Nese Daglar, and she's the grandmother of a chef in Istanbul, Cagla Gurses.
And she took us into her apartment and cooked this dish for us.
It's called Dügün Çorbasi.
Now, it's a great teaching recipe, because it has three parts to it that I think are really interesting.
It starts with making your own broth.
Traditionally, they use lamb necks.
That's something you'd also see in Mexico, for example.
You can use shanks for this, beef shanks or lamb shanks.
We have lamb shanks today.
So you start by making a wonderful broth and taking the meat out.
Then you fortify the broth like you would with a Greek lemon soup.
So you have lemon juice, eggs.
They add a little yogurt and flour as well to thicken.
So you have a fortified broth and you have the umami from the meat.
So let's get started.
So, we have two lamb shanks.
Again, you could use beef shanks if you don't like lamb.
Onion, carrot... Go in.
And the water.
Essentially water to cover.
And a couple of teaspoons of salt.
And we'll bring that up to a simmer.
We'll cook that for two, two-and-a-half hours.
You want those shanks to get really fully cooked because of all that collagen and connective tissue in them.
You really want that to melt so the meat is really wonderful.
So while that's happening, we're going to make our drizzle, or tarka, as we call it-- T-A-R-K-A.
Tarkas are made usually with oil, but it could be oil and butter or ghee, if you like.
And then usually there's a spice, usually some sort of ground pepper or other spice.
This is maras pepper or aleppo pepper.
It's a Turkish pepper, it has nice and fruity flavor.
It's not too spicy.
There's some garlic, and we'll heat that up, and... it's going to just start to bubble a little bit.
And that color from the maras, from that pepper, is going to infuse the oil.
We'll just cook that for a minute or a minute and a half and take that off the heat.
We'll let it sit and cool, and then we'll strain it out to get rid of the solids.
So the lamb shanks are done.
We've strained out the broth, obviously, there.
And now we're going to cook some more carrots in the broth.
As well as some potato.
And they'll take 12 to 15 minutes or so to cook.
We'll just simmer those gently.
Meanwhile, I want to shred the meat from the shanks...
Discard any fat or other things while I'm doing it.
So I'll finish up, shredding the meat from the shanks, and we'll finish cooking these and we'll be right back.
So the meat's shredded, the vegetables are now cooked.
And my favorite part of this is the fortification.
We have an egg yolk.
We have some lemon juice.
So far, it's very much like the Greek soup, but they add a little flour to thicken and, of course, yogurt, because yogurt goes into almost everything in Turkey.
So I want to make sure the flour is not lumpy.
So, since this has an egg in it, you need to temper it, which means that if you just threw it in a hot liquid, it would probably cook.
I'm also going to reduce this temperature down, because when we put this in, we don't want it to be boiling.
Okay, so we'll take part of a ladle... Just whisk it in.
That broth really smells great.
Okay, so now we can whisk it back in.
We're just going to heat this gently.
We'll add the meat as well.
And we're just going to heat this-- reheat the meat-- for just a couple of minutes.
But again, you don't want it to boil, because you have that emulsion with the eggs and you don't want it to cook.
So we'll just heat this gently for just a couple of minutes.
The third part of this recipe is really interesting, because they add a ton of herbs all across the Middle East.
It's so different than, you know, let's say a Julia Child recipe, which is a tablespoon or a teaspoon.
So, we're going to use dill.
This has great flavor.
Mint also, and parsley.
So we have the herbs, and those go in, obviously, just at the last minute.
So even though we're starting with shanks, you're ending with fresh herbs.
It's just a great combination.
So, there we have it.
But we're not quite done yet.
We have one last little thing we did earlier, which is the tarka, which is the flavored oil.
♪ ♪ So, this is the tarka.
This had the aleppo or maras pepper in it and a little bit of garlic; we strain that out.
So we'll just do a little drizzle.
♪ ♪ And if you ever go to Turkey, you'll see so many of the dishes are presented like this, with that little drizzle at the end.
And of course, we still have more of the fresh herbs.
♪ ♪ So there you go.
That's our Turkish wedding soup.
Not served at weddings, but served at home any time you want.
Nice base of meatiness with the broth.
Fortifying the broth, fresh herbs, nice potatoes and carrots, and finished with that slightly spicy garlicky oil at the end.
It's really a soup that has almost everything: texture, flavor.
Every time you take a bite, there's something new going on.
A great example of the kind of recipe we love to do here at Milk Street.
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ - Mexican chicken soup called sopa de lima originates in the Yucatan peninsula.
But the lima fruit that grows in abundance in the Yucatan is not your average lime.
Sometimes called bittersweet lime or bitter lime, it's known for its unique blend of flavor notes: of tart, sweet, bitter, and tangy.
But we will start at the beginning, and like all good soups, our recipe starts with making a very flavorful broth.
So we start with bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs.
Now, using bone-in chicken really helps to build flavor and body in the broth.
The gelatin inside those bones cooks out, flavors the broth, gives it a little bit of extra body.
We're using three pounds of bone-in chicken thighs for this, and we are going to brown half of them, which we've already done here.
You can see the difference.
Skin side down in a little preheated oil.
Let those skins brown deeply, and that will add not only chicken fat, but a lot of flavor to the pot.
Now, we use the residual fat in the pot, and we start adding our vegetables and making the flavorful broth from that.
Chicken fat in there, and we'll start with sliced onions.
You want to slice it thinly, so it cooks down and softens very quickly.
Add a quarter teaspoon salt.
I always add a little bit of salt when onions are cooking and browning because it brings out their flavor.
We want to let the onions get a nice, deep golden brown.
That sweetens them, softens them, cooks them all at once.
I'm going to stir them to coat them in the chicken fat.
We'll let them cook for about ten minutes.
We'll give them a stir every now and then during that time, until they get a nice medium golden brown.
Now, that big bowl of onions is cooked down to a nice, manageable amount here.
Nice and soft.
We're just going to start adding our spices, our aromatics, and really building a lot of flavor for our broth.
We're adding some chopped jalapeño.
Take the seeds out if you want a mild heat, leave the seeds in for a more intense heat.
And, of course, we have some garlic.
(sizzling) Mix that in.
We're going to let that cook for about 30 seconds or so, until it gets aromatic, and then we're going to start with our spice blends.
We're using dried oregano.
It's not only convenient, it's the traditional use of dried oregano in Mexico.
You could certainly use a little fresh if you have that.
And we're using a combination of ground spices.
We have cumin, allspice, and cinnamon.
Now, allspice and cinnamon are traditionally thought of as sweet spices, right?
But in Mexico, allspice and cinnamon are used widely across sweet and savory applications.
This blend of sweet and savory spices really complements those tangy sweet notes in the lime.
Now, what's really nice here is we are using the cilantro stems in this as well.
I'll get those stirred in.
You have a whole bunch of cilantro.
It's really fantastic to use both the stems and the leaves.
We'll save the leaves for adding to the soup at the very end, and we'll chop the stems up just as we would celery or onion or anything like that, and we'll use them in the soup itself.
It's a great way to use up the whole bunch.
All right, this is smelling so fantastic.
I'm going to add now-- this is a can of whole tomatoes that we crushed by hand.
We really love the tomato flavor where we start with canned whole tomatoes.
You have the seeds in there, the skin, the juices, the pulp.
All the parts of the tomato are in there.
Now, as I stir the tomato in, I'll see that it's starting to pick up the spices that had stuck to the bottom of the pot.
That's totally fine.
Any liquid you add to the pot once those spices are stuck, will help release them from the bottom.
And we will now add our chicken broth.
We're using two quarts of chicken broth.
By all means, if you don't have chicken broth, use water.
We like the richness and extra flavor we get from using carton chicken broth.
And this is low sodium.
Turn this up just a little bit.
Now we'll return the chicken to the broth, both the browned and the unbrowned chicken.
Now we'll bring this back up to a full simmer, and we'll keep it going at a steady simmer for 45 minutes until the chicken is fully cooked.
Okay, now that I'm at a nice, active simmer, I'll put the lid on it.
I'll keep a check on this to keep the temperature at a simmer.
We don't want it to boil vigorously in here.
And we'll let this cook for 45 minutes.
The chicken should be fully cooked by that time and be tender enough to pull off the bone very easily.
So after our chicken cooked 45 minutes in the broth, we pulled the pot off the heat, took the chicken out, and we're letting it cool down a little bit.
Now we're going to pull the meat off the bones.
I've done most of it already.
Just remove the skin.
It's given us all the flavor it has to give.
And then, when the chicken is cooked, it comes off the bone very easily.
You can see it doesn't take much effort.
Discard those bones, and then just break this meat up into smaller pieces.
Doesn't have to be perfect.
Just shred it.
Now we'll add this chicken meat back to the broth.
The broth is nice and hot.
The chicken is still warm.
There we go.
Stir that in.
Oh, this is just a beautifully rich chicken soup at this point.
Now comes the lima part.
Here we have three quarters of a cup-- I told you it wasn't a little bit-- three quarters of a cup of grapefruit juice.
And now, to help replicate the flavor of the lima citrus from the Yucatan, we're going to add some lime to the grapefruit.
So we've got this somewhat sweet grapefruit juice here, and we're going to add three tablespoons of freshly squeezed lime juice.
And that's another point: you want to use fresh citrus for both the grapefruit and the lime.
So for three tablespoons of lime juice, if you have a nice plump lime, you'll probably get three tablespoons out of it.
If not, squeeze two limes.
There we go, that looks great.
Lime and grapefruit juice going in.
You might think that's a lot of citrus juice.
This soup is actually very rich, so believe me, it's not too much.
This is a sopa de lima, you want to taste that citrus.
Just a little bit of salt.
And maybe a pinch of pepper.
And then we'll serve it at the table with a little bit of cilantro for garnish and some extra lime.
This is one of those soups that is hearty and light at the same time.
Hearty because it has a lot of good chicken in it, a lot of flavor in it.
But it's also light because the broth is on the thin side, even though it's full of flavor.
This is traditionally served with fried tortilla strips, but we use good old tortilla chips.
Convenient and delicious, everybody loves them.
We'll garnish with a little bit of fresh cilantro... And, if you want, a little extra squeeze of lime.
Now, here's the thing: the true lima fruit is difficult to find here, but if you come across any or have an opportunity for someone to bring some back for you, try this soup with that.
It's quite a unique-tasting fruit, and it's fabulous.
(crunching) But in the meantime, try our Yucatecan chicken and lime soup.
I promise you will not be disappointed.
Bright and citrusy.
The chicken is so tender, full of spices and flavor.
This is fabulous soup.
♪ ♪ - Across the 7,000 islands that comprise the Philippines, there are almost as many ways to make binakol na manok.
It's a brothy, rich soup, suffused with coconut, ginger, and lemongrass.
And in the Western Visayas Islands, where it originates, it's traditionally cooked in a hollow shaft of bamboo, stuffed with lemongrass, covered in banana leaves, and then simmered over an open flame or medium hot coals.
Now, cooking in bamboo isn't the most practical for most U.S. home cooks, but there's still plenty to learn about balancing bright and rich flavors to make a deeply flavorful soup.
Now, the first thing we need to do is cut down our ginger here, and we're going to break these down into matchsticks.
I'm going to show you exactly how.
Now, first and foremost, it's already been peeled.
If you don't already know, the easiest way to peel ginger is actually with a spoon.
But we'll take this peeled ginger and cut it down into very thin coins.
Once you get to what I call the scary part of cutting things, go ahead and put it on its flat side and then just again, trim it down into very thin pieces.
So from there, we'll gather all of this up into a neat little row, and then we'll just cut all the way through, making very, very thin lines of ginger.
(chopping) And there we go.
Really beautifully thin matchsticks.
With the ginger all prepped, I'm going to set my large pot here over medium heat.
We'll add in some oil and heat it up until it starts to shimmer.
Into this pot, I'll be throwing in a thinly sliced red onion... (sizzling) As well as our ginger matchsticks.
(sizzling) And now we're going to cook this down until the red onion becomes a little translucent.
That takes about five minutes.
It's worth noting that buko, or a young green coconut, is the traditional ingredient here.
It usually involves the coconut water on the inside, as well as that super tender meat on the inside as well.
It's a little harder to source in the U.S., but we were thrilled to find two very good substitutions that yielded tasty, tasty results.
That would be coconut water and wide flake dried coconut.
Now, the coconut water that you're using, you want to make sure it is completely unsweetened.
We're working with pure coconut water here, as well as some broth to bolster the flavor of the chicken.
Now, speaking of the chicken, I'm going to lay that on top of my onions here, and I'll also throw in our fish sauce, also known as patis.
And as soon as both of those ingredients are in the pan, just give it a little toss, just to make sure that all of the chicken is coated in that fish sauce.
Seasoning chicken with fish sauce instead of salt is actually quite traditional.
So once all of your chicken is coated, we can go ahead and follow that up with that coconut water... As well as some chicken broth.
And finally, a little bit of black pepper.
We'll give that another stir.
Now, we're going to want to bring this mixture up to a boil over medium-high heat.
And while that happens, let's go ahead and talk about our other flavor: lemongrass.
Now, it's a very hearty aromatic, but you really only need the bottom six inches of it.
Everything up above is very woody and fibrous, not really pleasant to bite down on.
So, go ahead and chop all that top part off, and then from there, you'll notice that some of the outer layers are on the drier side.
Go ahead and remove those.
You're looking for the more supple, almost white interior of lemongrass.
So from there, go ahead and take the flat part of your knife, press that right on top, and get your aggression out.
(thumping) You'll see that the entire lemongrass does break up into a bunch of pieces, but for the most part, they'll keep together.
And all of that bruising is going to release this beautifully citrusy lemon verbena flavor all throughout the broth here, which has come to a boil.
So that means we can throw it on in.
Now, once you throw your lemongrass in, you want to reduce the heat down to medium-low and then pop a lid on it.
Essentially, we're going to simmer this soup down until the chicken is cooked all the way through, and that takes about 18 minutes or so.
Some recipes for binakol na manok will call for a green papaya as well as a chayote squash.
Both of them have a very crisp, almost pear-like texture, but for ease of sourcing, we're sticking with only chayote squash.
You could also find this called a mirliton in the south because it's used pretty extensively throughout Louisiana cooking.
So let me go ahead and show you how to break this down.
So first and foremost, you want to peel all of that green skin off.
So, go ahead and halve this.
And you'll find on the inside there's a little area where the seed is.
We'll get that by cutting this into quarters... And then from there, you'll see the entire seed is exposed.
You want to go ahead and cut out all of this white pith around the seed, because that tends to be a little bit fibrous as well as a little bit bitter.
My favorite way of going about it is rest your quarter of chayote on its cut side, and then you want to cut diagonally through it, almost like you're cutting out the core of an apple that's been quartered.
If after that diagonal cut, you still find yourself with a little bit of that seed or pith, go ahead and use a spoon and scoop it out.
All you want to work with is that pale green flesh.
I actually asked my mom specifically how to prepare chayote squash, and she said she used to spend so many hours with her dad just peeling away with a spoon.
So, I feel very at home with this.
There we go, nice and clean.
And from here, we want to thinly slice our chayote squash.
What's great is, as it cooks, it really does maintain its crisp texture while absorbing all the flavors from the broth.
What we're going to do now is throw in our chayote squash, along with our other substitution ingredient, wide flake dried coconut.
Now, when you're looking for this in the shops, make sure you're getting the unsweetened variety, for the same reason we want unsweetened coconut water.
We don't want additional sweetness in the soup, so work with unsweetened coconut.
We'll go ahead and put all of our chayote right into our broth, and we'll follow that up with our dried wide flake coconut.
And as it cooks in the broth, all of those dried flakes will reconstitute and actually get a little plump, and it gives this broth really fantastic chew.
Now that we have the chayote and the coconut in there, we're going to adjust the heat just to make sure we get back to a simmer, and we'll pop a lid on it, so that way it can cook for another eight minutes or so.
And that should be just enough time to cook the chayote through.
It's been about eight minutes.
The chayote is definitely cooked.
And now, before we can get to serving, we need to do a couple things first, namely removing that tough lemongrass.
It's already done its job, we're finished with it, so go ahead and fish it out.
Now we'll follow this up with some baby spinach.
The traditional ingredient is known as dahon ng sili, which is basically just chili leaves, but, again, hard to find in the U.S. Go ahead and work with what you got.
So, we'll throw all of this in and cook it down until it wilts.
You know that takes barely any time at all.
Ah, the spinach adds such a vibrant green color to the soup.
Oh, my gosh.
As I'm stirring this spinach through, the aroma that's coming off, it's like comfort in a pot.
I mean, what's more comforting than chicken soup?
Well, that spinach is wilted, so let's go ahead and serve ourselves up a bowl, shall we?
Look at that.
So, a fun part of Filipino cuisine is that it has a lot of condiments to customize whatever dish you're eating to exactly your taste.
So we have a couple fixins here to make that happen, between the bright acidity of lime as well as a little bit of heat coming from thinly sliced serrano peppers.
And I want a little bit of heat today, so we're going in with all the peppers.
(laughing): So... From here, you're pretty much ready to go.
This is traditionally served with rice, but honestly, the bowl of soup on its own, it hits the spot pretty quickly.
I mean, look at that.
♪ ♪ Mm.
Oh, it's so bright.
All that coconut flavor really comes through in a nicely subtle way, balanced with the savoriness of chicken, as well as that really fun citrusy, gingery brightness.
Oh, it makes me feel at home.
I didn't grow up eating this, but each and every bite makes me feel like I did.
It just hits such a comfort spot, and I have a feeling it's going to hit the same comfort spot for you.
You can get this recipe as well as all of the recipes from this season of Milk Street at MilkStreetTV.com.
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- Funding for this series was provided by the following: - That meal.
You sautéed, you seared, and you served, cooking with All-Clad, bonded cookware designed, engineered, and assembled in the U.S.A. for over 50 years.
All-Clad: for all your kitchen adventures.
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