Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Coconut Chicken Soup with Crusty Gluten free Bread

You cannot reinvent the wheel--the basic principles will always be the same for it. However, you can invent millions of different variations of the wheel to try and direct it to more specific needs and tastes. Chicken soup is really the same thing--constantly reinvented to be more appeasing to the chef or the diners. I love chicken soup, all of the versions I have made and tried I find to be pleasing. last night I wanted to try something with coconut milk and thought--SOUP! Coconut milk has lost the bad rap it had help previously because of the fat content it has--much like avocado this fruit hold a lot of health benefits in it's flesh. Bone building, immune boosting, weight loss producing benefits all wrapped into the flesh of the coconut make this a revival ingredient for a lot of health food lovers.

I loved the taste of the broth, it was not heavy with tropical sunscreen taste at all, in fact the exact coconut flavor has no distinct act in this play. More that it adds a soft feeling in the mouth and a rich creamy blend to the broth--leaves you fuller longer, too! We like that!

I paired the soup with a delightful gluten free crusty bread that actually stays soft even when left out over night--I know, shocking!

Coconut Chicken Soup
serves 6
6 complete chicken legs
8 ounces coconut milk
2 cups gluten free chicken broth
1 onion
1 medium winter squash
2 cloves garlic diced
2 tsp cumin
2 bay leaves

Heat a large saute pan on medium high heat. Skin the chicken legs and remove all visible fat then using a sharp knife separate the thigh from the drum stick. Place the chicken legs in the hot pan while you prepare the rest of the ingredients, make sure to not over lap the chicken pieces. Peel and slice your onion and add to the cooking chicken. Slowly pour in the 2 cups or broth, once the broth has been added you can slowly pour the coconut milk in. Stir the soup to blend the milk with the broth and coat all the the chicken pieces. Next add the diced garlic, cumin and bay leaves.

Peel your squash, remove the seeds and chunk it up, add this to the cooking chicken. Cover and and lower heat to just below medium and simmer for 40 minutes.

Serve hot with a nice crusty bread.
Calories Per Serving
: 260
Carbohydrates- 1 gram
Protein-26 grams
Fat-16 grams

Other Good Ideas:
--add in all the vegetables you want
-- add some chili powder to make this hotter on the inside

Now bread has the same approach as the soup--bread was invented and now can be modified a million times and still be interesting and really a comfort food to many. With my daughter having an allergy to gluten we have been trying different brands of gluten free bread as well as making our own. It is like finding the holy grail for us! Well, I was looking over the book, The Gluten Connection that was lent to me by a friend and decided to modify the Basic White Bread recipe the author has. The result was surprising and pleasing! You can see, if you click the image of the bread how airy and light it looks--it was not dry at all and had a great feel in the mouth as well as a traditional "yeast bread" flavor to it. The crust reminded me of the stone baked breads you can get in real bakeries. Winner winner--yeah exactly--chicken dinner!

Gluten Free Crusty Bread
serves the masses
3 large eggs
1/4 coconut oil
1 1/3 cup water
2 tbls Agave nectar
Juice of 1 lemon
1 cup Brown Rice Flour
1 cup Tapioca Flour
1 cup Arrowroot Flour
2 tsp xanthan gum
2/3 powdered milk
2 packets yeast

In a stand mixer place the liquid ingredients and set on the low. In a separate bowl blend the dry ingredients and mix well to ensure the xanthan gum is well blended.

Add the flour mixture a 1/2 cup at a time to the liquid mix--be sure to stop and scrape down the sides so that all the flour mixture is incorporated.

Mix the batter for about 7 minutes on low speed to really convince this dough it wants to get along really well and will become the bread you know it can become--think positive right now, this is gluten free bread in the making!
Once it is fully blended it will look like cake batter, not the traditional bread dough you are use to creating. It will be gooey and sticky and that is OK--better than OK it is what we want!

Place this mess into a slightly greased bowl and set in a warm place for an hour to allow it to double in size. I always put mine in the oven on the lowest temp which is 170 degrees. I am not a professional baker--but this has always allowed the yeast to survive and thrive.
Then beat the dough back down and tell it who the real boss of the kitchen is--place back in the warm place and allow to rise again. Look at all the air and activity it had from the second rise! (seriously click the image of the side view and be amazed!)

Now, I left mine in this bowl to bake as well--thank you Pyrex for your miracle glass! I baked it on 375 degrees for 35 minutes.

I wanted to snap a picture of the finished bread but my family was too hungry to wait for me to get my camera. So they sliced it while I was camera hunting.
However, you can just see how great this bread came out--it did not even remotely hint at being a gluten free product at all!

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday! Check out More REAL FOOD ideas and stories!


  1. looks delicious, I just want to dive right in and have a bowl for myself

  2. What a great idea to add coconut milk to the chicken soup, love it! Delicious with the addition of squash too!

  3. What a yummy looking soup - I can't wait to try it.

  4. Squeaking with delight if I could taste some of that coconut soup! Nom Nom Nom is right! thanks for posting this along with the mouth watering pics :0)

  5. Sounds wonderful! I love chicken soup with coconut milk. I've mostly had it with other asian flavors like garlic, chiles and ginger but the cumin and squash sounds fantastic too. Have you seen the blog Everything Free Eating? It's a blogspot blog and she's got gluten free (and everything else free :) kids. A couple great gluten free bread recipes in there.

  6. Alyss--no I have not seen it--I will scope it out, thanks!

  7. I love the chicken/coconut combo! It's my favorite soup! This version is more advanced than the one that I make. Can't wait to try it with the squash.

  8. Your soup sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing :)

  9. I am going to try your bread recipe. I made some great french onion soup but no bread to go with it...it needed the bread to hold the cheese up. Your recipe looks simple enough.

    I found you through Real Food Wednesday - so glad I did!