Zoodles in a Quick Chicken Pho (Zucchini noodles in a Vietnamese soup)

Zoodles in a Quick Chicken Pho (Zucchini noodles in a Vietnamese soup)

Have you tried PHO (prounched as “FUH”)??
Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup. The authentic soup is more like a broth(clear) made with a meat/ poultry as it’s base (with bones), spices and with herb and vegetable garnishes.¬†Here is a LOW-CARB version!! In this recipe, we have replaced the NOODLES with ZOODLES ūüôā

Wondering what ‘ZOODLES’ are??¬†¬†Zoodles= Zucchini noodles, or in other words noodles made by spiralizing zucchini (using a vegetable spiralizer). The resulting zoodles is a great low-carb substitute for any recipe that calls for noodles, pasta/spaghetti (or even rice)! You can even make zucchini sheets and use them instead of lasagna sheets. If you don’t have a vegetable spiralizer then use your vegetable peeler to make sheets, then cut the sheets into strips.

Zucchini sheets for lasagna/salads or cutting into noodles

Zoodles are a low-carb substitute for noodles/pasta if you are on a low-carb diet, low-calorie diet or just want to increase your vegetable intake. Zucchini is a member of the gourd family and is low in calorie, high in fibre, also rich in flavonoid antioxidants (mostly found in the skin), B-complex vitamins, folate, B6, B1, B2, B3, and choline, as well as minerals like potassium, zinc and magnesium.

This is great dish when you are feeling a little under the weather or need something warm or on a cold winter’s day or when you are feeling lazy to make an elaborate meal. It’s a one pot dish which will keep you full for a long time.

Ingredients for Quick Chicken Pho with Zoodles: (Serves 4)

  • Chicken: 500 gms cut into small pieces (with bone makes it tastier, but you can use boneless too)
  • Zucchinis: 3 large (spiralized )
  • Chicken stock/broth: 8 cups
  • Onion: 1 large (sliced)
  • Ginger: 3″ julienned
  • Star anise: 1no.
  • Cloves: 4
  • Pepper corns: 4nos
  • Fish sauce: 2 tbsp
  • Pepper powder: 1tsp
  • Green chillies/jalape√Īo (optional): 1-2nos (thinly sliced)
  • Bok choy: 2 heads
  • Bean/Moong sprouts- 1 cup
  • Cilantro/coriander leaves: 1 small bunch (chopped)
  • Basil: 1 sprig
  • Lime: 1 no. cut into wedges
  • Spring onions/ Scallions: 2 (sliced)
  • Sriracha/hot sauce(optional): to taste
  • Salt: to taste

Method:

  1. Heat 1-2 teaspoon of oil in a large pot, add the star anise, peppercorns, cloves and ginger strips. After a minute, add the sliced onions and saute till they are translucent. (this is an optional step as I find sauteing the onions and ginger adds a better flavour to the pho rather than boiling it all in the stock).
  2. Add the stock, the chicken, fish sauce, salt, black pepper and to the stock and bring it to a boil. Then lower the heat and let it simmer for 20-25 mins.(if you don’t want to saute the onions and ginger, then you need to add it directly to the stock along with the whole spices).
  3. Add the bok choy and cook till it wilts. (If you have used chicken with bones, you can take them out, remove the bones and put the chicken pieces back)
  4. Divide the zucchini noodles into 4 bowls.
  5. Ladle the piping hot soup into bowls and top with spring onion, bean/moong sprouts, basil, cilantro. Serve with a lime wedge to squeeze over, and hot sauce, extra fish sauce and sliced chilli to add to taste.

 

 


Hearty Vegetable Soup

This is a hearty soup filled with lots of vegetables. The flavour and protein content of the soup is enhanced by the addition of moong/mung dal

  • Moong dal: 1/2 cup (wash in water, drain)
  • Celery- 1 cup chopped
  • Cauliflower- 1 cup (broken into bite sized)
  • Green beans- 1 cup (chop into about 1″)
  • Cabbage-2 cups shredded
  • Zucchini- 1 medium diced (about 2 cups)
  • Turnip- 1 medium (diced)
  • Onion- 2 medium (diced)
  • Tomato- 2 medium (diced)
  • Ginger: 1 ” piece (julienned)
  • Garlic-4¬†cloves finely chopped
  • Green chili: 2-3 slit
  • Palak/Spinach- 1 cup
  • Oil- 2 tsp
  • Cumin/Jeera seeds- 1tsp
  • Cloves-2 nos.
  • Cinnamon-1/2″
  • Bay leaves- 1 no.
  • Peppercorns- 3-4nos.
  • Coriander/cilantro leaves- 2 tbsp for garnish (chopped)
  • Moong/bean sprouts: 3-4 tbsp (optional)
  • salt- to taste
  • Pepper- 1/2- 1 tsp

Method:

  1. Heat the oil in a pot, when it’s hot add the bay leaves, jeera, cloves, cinnamon and peppercorns.
  2. Add the slit green chilies, ginger, diced onions and garlic. Stir fry till the onions turn translucent.
  3. Add the moong dal and saute for a minute, then add all the vegetables and stir fry for about 5 mins.
  4. Add about 6 cups of water, pepper, salt to taste and let it simmer for a good 25-30 mins (stir in between)
  5. Garnish with chopped coriander and sprouts, serve hot.