This tasty chicken soup is a Thai speciality. Serve Kaeng Chud Kai Hed (kang chud kie hehd) as part of a Thai or Chinese meal.
4 lb. chicken
2 pints chicken stock
1 teaspoon salt
6 spring onions , finely chopped
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander leaves
4 oz. bean sprouts, fresh or canned and drained
1 tablespoon soy sauce
4 Chinese mushrooms, soaked in warm water for
30 minutes, drained and finely chopped
1 small cucumber, peeled, skin reserved, and flesh finely chopped
Place the chicken in a large saucepan. Pour over the chicken stock and add the salt and spring onions . Cover the pan, place it over moderate heat and bring the stock to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 to 1 ½ hours, or until the chicken is tender when pierced with the point of a sharp knife.
Remove the pan from the heat.
Using two large spoons, lift the chicken out of the stock and set it on a plate to cool. Pour the chicken stock into a large bowl and set aside.
When the chicken is cool enough to handle, tear it into shreds with your fingers, or place it on a wooden board and, with a sharp knife, cut the flesh into small cubes. Set aside.
In a large saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the garlic, coriander leaves and bean sprouts. Fry, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the chicken, the soy sauce and the Chinese mushrooms, and fry, stirring constantly, for a further 3 minutes. Add the reserved stock and bring the soup to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the soup into a warmed soup tureen.
Float curls of cucumber skin on the surface of the soup. Serve immediately, with the chopped cucumber flesh.