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What's your 'Temple Food'?

Tuesday, 16 February 2010  |  Admin

It's all Nigella Lawson's fault. Yes, she of the 'Midnight Feast, licking fingers in your jammies' fame. In her 'How to Eat' book, under the admittedly small section on healthier foods, she uses the term 'Temple Food'. For me, this translates as food that is healthy, easy to prepare but most of all tasty!
For some reason, in my house, these things are mostly Thai related. I think it's the combination of zingy lime, spicy chilli and pungent fish sauce that grabs your tastebuds and shakes them until they explode. We usually end up eating this on a Tuesday evening, especially if we've had a roast chicken on a Sunday and I've managed to make some stock. That doesn't always happen though, but a stock cube does the job pretty well.
If the kids are eating with us, I'll do 2 slightly different versions, one without the lime and chilli. One of the reasons I love this is that the recipe is so flexible. I can use whatever I have to hand as long as I've got noodles and decent chicken stock.
Chicken Noodle Soup
Leftover chickenChicken stock (allow 300ml per person)Egg Noodles (1 'nest' per person)Garlic, 1 or 2 clovesChilli to taste (I often use the jarred 'easy' chilli)1 or 2 Limes2 tbs fish sauceParsley or Coriander (I've just discovered frozen coriander which is perfect for this)Beans. I use tinned butter beans or frozen soya beans, whatever I have to handVeg of some sort. Cherry Tomatoes, Pak Choi and Spinach all work well.
Chuck everything aside from the noodles and beans in the pan and simmer for 5 minutes.After 5 minutes add the noodles and beans and cook for a further 5 minutes.Serve...with extra coriander on top if you have some around.This produces a slurpy noodle type soup. If you want a more broth-y soup, cook the noodles separately and just add them at the end.
If you've got a 'Temple Food' type recipe that you'd like to share, I'd LOVE to hear about it!

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