Together with rice, soup is a basic item in a Vietnamese meal. This recipe combines chicken, rice noodles, serrano chiles, green beans, onion and bean sprouts into a soup hearty enough to serve alone.
3 qt. chicken stock
1 onion, sliced
8 slices gingerroot
l stalk lemongrass, sliced
1 cinnamon stick
1-2 serrano chilies, seeded and sliced
1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 lb. green beans
4 carrots, julienned
4 oz. bean sprouts
8 oz. dried rice noodles
Fish sauce (nam pla or nuoc nam), to taste
Thinly sliced radishes and cilantro sprigs, for garnish
1. Combine stock, onion, ginger, lemongrass, cinnamon, and chilies in a stock pot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 1 hr.
2. Add chicken, green beans, and carrots to boiling stock; simmer 10 min. Add bean sprouts; cook 5 min. longer.
3. Meanwhile, soak noodles in hot water to soften; drain.
4. For service, place some of noodles into bowl and ladle hot soup on top. Add fish sauce to taste and garnish with radishes and cilantro.