Rinse the Chinese or Vietnamese supermarket or your green grocer of all the colourful chard, greens, leafy things they have-Mange tout, baby corns, green beans, pok choi, cavelo nero or just cabbage... whatever you fancy and finely slice wash and put to one side. I like to cut things length ways but its whatever you fancy, the finer you slice the less time they need to cook.
Finely slice, cucumber and spring onions, ready to garnish your soup with, slice coriander and red chilli too.
Fried Fish Cake and fried fish ball
I've gone through a weird obsession with fried fish balls and fishcake, both are similar, salty, rubbery and made up of non specific fish parts...DON'T be put off they're great.
Both can be added 5 mins before serving the soup as you can't really over cook them and they only need heating through.
I'm slightly partial to eating them cold...
For the soup stock...
Miso paste is a great and easy cheat when making a light stock soup, add a teaspoon at a time to hot water and keep trying it. Watch it though coz this to is salty so don't over do it.
It's always nice and healthy to finely slice 2/3 cloves of garlic, 2inches of ginger (bash it before slicing so that you maximise the flavour you get out of it) 1 lemongrass stalk, again bash this up a bit before slicing then add to a tiny bit of oil before adding the stock. Kaffir lime leaves very finely sliced are also good for adding zest along with fresh lime, (add this at the end).
You can always add a spoon of Tom Yum paste to the stock, don't be afraid to add a bit of soy sauce (again a salty option) or fish sauce (another ....salty one) or try out the vietnamese stock cubes. Also adding a dash of sugar can give it a nice edge too.
Aim for a good mixture of sweet and salty
Chop up your fish, I've always bought the frozen cuttlefish or squid from the Vietnamese but FMC, Fish Man Craig has since told me that's probably the most unsustainable fish you can get, slight error!
You can use any fish you fancy, it doesn't have to be cuttlefish.
Sweet Thai Basil...the herb that beats coriander and parsley, its sweet and slightly aniseedy, it makes the soup and it perfect in thai green curries.
Add greens 3/4mins before serving, once you are happy with the taste of your stock, cherry tomatoes are also a nice addition. This soup is defo a favourite and a must try.
Perfect for dinner parties, everyone can help themselves, serve as just soup or add any type of noodle to it or rice, either way it's great.(A good way to avoid carbs too, if your trying!)
Ted pre hair cut & very interested in the soup :-)