The Rotisserie Chicken Edit (Part 2)
This week: crunchy noodle bowls and chicken soup
Last year I did a post about a rotisserie chicken, so consider this a sequel of sorts [read part one here]. Though said chickens are absolutely definitely totally getting smaller, I’m still partial to grabbing one if I need something to form the backbone of a couple of meals. I got one from Sainsburys for £5.50, and it made 4x portions (two meals for me and Rob). This time: a punchy Vietnamese som tam-style noodle salad, and a big bowl of the best chicken noodle soup I’ve ever made.
1.Chicken and Vermicelli noodle bowls
This is inspired by Bun ga nuong, a Vietnamese dish which is usually made with grilled chicken. Here I’ve done my own thing (by which I mean I’ve probably culturally demolished it in some way) but this is Scraps, not Chris Mandle’s Guide To Replicating Things Perfectly.
Texture is key to these flavourful noodle bowls. I make them with a combination of:
Protein, aka rotisserie chicken (a big tray of roasted chickpeas might be good as well)
Noodles. I opted for vermicelli, which are deceptively wispy looking (can relate etc) but quite filling. You usually soak these in hot water, rather than cook them on the hob.
Crunchy veg. Sliced bell pepper, carrot, sliced cabbage, radish, whatever’s kicking around. I try for a ratio of 1:1:2 of protein/noodle/veg. Let’s get some fibre in, yea?
Dressing. You can do this the proper way (like, googling it) or my way which is to make up a quick nuoc cham. That’s 2 tablespoons of caster sugar, 1 teaspoon of finely chopped ginger, 2 garlic cloves (mince or finely slice, up to you), 2 tablespoons of fish sauce, and the juice of 1-2 limes (start with one, and then add the second after it needs more of a lip-smacking vibe).
Mix it all together and serve with crispy onions, hot sauce, and any herbs (coriander, mint) you have lying around. I added some finely sliced mini cucumbers because mini versions of things = fun.
What a banger!
2.Chicken and sweet potato soup
I love making chicken soup with the rotisserie carcass. It is so, so satisfying. I’ve done a couple of soups on here and you know my approach is pretty low-fi but this chicken soup is done in a couple of stages.
First you make the stock — I’ve featured veg scrap stock a few times before so have a scroll back if you need a refresher. This time, the carcass (plus the wings, since the wings on rotisserie chicken are tinyyyy) get chucked in and the whole thing simmers for a couple of hours (I did this on a Friday morning, but feel free to simmer it all afternoon). Strain the stock and discard the veg.
Normally by this point I’d start building the soup by cooking a soffrito, but I wanted a light broth-like soup with chunky vegetables, so I skipped that (and, after tasting the stock, I knew it had enough flavour already). I heated the strained stock in a new pan and added the below ingredients in the following order:
the sweet potatoes go in first; cut them as small as you can without getting bored, as they’ll cook quicker.
next, add the pasta — this needs to go in when the soup is actually hot, otherwise they’ll kind of sink to the bottom of the pan for some reason.
after another minute or two, add the shredded chicken
and four or five minutes before you’re ready to serve, add the carrots and celery. This means they retain their sweetness and texture, rather than simmering away into smush. That’s not what we’re going for; we want light broth, lots of texture, lots of interesting things to chew away on while you’re hunched over your laptop.
Literally all you need (plus your stock, plus a working kitchen, plus bowls, plus a mouth, ideally)
The sweet potatoes bring a really nice silky sweetness and the carrot has bite. The chicken, which can be dry if it’s been shredded off the bone, will soak up the rich broth and the whole thing will really taste quite amazing. You can add noodles instead of pasta shapes. You could also add pulses, or butterbeans, or a big handful of greens at the end (kale, chard, both good). I added a dribble of hot sauce and loads of bread to dip into it.
The Week In Scraps (aka the Scrapbook aka some things I ate this week that are nice to look at)
Made these spiced, frazzled potato skins to top Meera Sodha’s potato and chickpea curry:
Been drinking a lot of this wine (not in a ‘let’s intervene’ way, just in a classy way). It’s minerally and refreshing and the bottle is unusually tall and thin which, hey, game respect game.
And I already shared this baguette on Instagram but it’s just so beautiful looking that I can’t stop thinking about it (50% went in a big sandwich full of salami, 20% went into sourdough breadcrumbs, and about 30% was eaten throughout an afternoon of edits).