This is a simple and nourishing soup that you can enjoy any time of the day. It was inspired from my favourite health destination Kamalaya in Koh Samui Thailand. I regularly make mine with skinless organic chicken thighs but this is the sort of soup you can swap and change to whatever ingredients you have on hand. I also love pouring in lightly beaten egg just at the very end before serving which makes wonderful egg noodles and adds another texture and flavour component that’s delicious.
Traditionally congee is made with rice added to the stock, which helps add density, but what I also like to do is cook my whole grain or seed seperatly which makes it easier to control portions. I also love to switch between using brown rice, quinoa and even whole barley that adds more flavour and a delicate chewiness. The aromatics are really simple, clean and straight forward with just a few drops of toasted sesame oil added at the very end.
What’s good about it:
Adding a little protein such as the chicken, quinoa and egg will give your body essential amino acids it needs to heal, repair and nourish. The quinoa I’ve used in this recipe will also supply quality carbs to replenish glycogen stores your body needs for energy. Aromatics such as coriander and ginger will act as an anti-viral.
600 g (21 oz) skinless chicken thighs (about 6 thighs) (see notes)
1 litres (4 cups / 35 1/4 fl oz) water
1 litre (4 cups / 35 1/4 fl oz) vegetable or chicken stock
2 cups quinoa - cooked
2 free range / organic eggs
1 bunch coriander (cilantro) leaves, chopped
4 spring onions (scallions), sliced
1 tablespoon finely shredded ginger (optional)
1 tablespoon tamari soy sauce – or to taste
white pepper to taste
few drops toasted sesame oil
Combine thighs, water and stock into a large saucepan.
Add ginger at this stage if using.
Simmer over a low heat with a lid on for 1 hour.
Remove the chicken and chop finely with a knife then return back into the stock.
Stir in the beaten eggs and season with soy sauce and a little white pepper to taste.
Divide quinoa into serving bowls and ladle the soup over.
Garnish the top with spring onion, coriander and a few drops of sesame oil.
Serve immediately and enjoy.
Nutrition per serve:
Protein: 33 g
Total fat: 15 g
Saturated: 4.2 g
Carbs: 7.7 g
- Vegetarians can use organic tofu or sauteed tempeh in place of the chicken.
- Aromatics such as pandan leaves and garlic can be added to the cooking water.
- Quinoa can be replaced with brown rice, buckwheat, whole barley or even just extra vegetables.
- A light sprinkle of fried shallots can be used for extra crunch and texture.
- A little chilli can be added for a little heat if you like.
- Duck can also be used in place of the chicken. You can choose to add it in a raw state at the start of cooking, or just use 100 % stock in place of water and top with BBQ shredded duck when serving.
- Addition of green vegetables such as broccoli, spinach or kale can be added to this soup 5 – 10 minutes prior to serving.
To Cut down on Cooking time:
Use 100 % stock to replace water.
Use sliced chicken breast in place of thighs….or tofu or beans in vego and simmer for 5 – 6 minutes total cooking time that is needed.
Can be served up in about 10 minutes from start to finish using this method.