I have always considered myself quite a nice person. I like food of all shapes, flavours and colours. From every country and continent. I don’t discriminate, I am an equal opportunity eater. It’s only the doctors who say I’m intolerant. And certain foods who refuse to tolerate me. They certainly refuse to recognise and respect my right to eat them without major physical discomfort and distress.

Gluten and lactose are not my friends.

Despite the negative attitudes surrounding me from many of those I love best, (cakes, ice cream, hot toast) I decided to become a chef. Not always easy when you live in a bread and milk filled world. I like to think that this has helped me become a better person as I embrace my differences and refuse to let the gluten get me down. I believe InTolerance. I am the InTolerant Chef.

Food should not be about what you can’t eat, but what you can and what you enjoy eating. This blog is about my journey of cooking and eating and discovery. It’s not a definitive guide to allergy awareness nor do my intolerances make me an expert. Your body is your responsibility, not mine. I only know what works for me.

I can tell you this..... No glutens were harmed in the making of this website.

August 2, 2010

Chicken and Corn Soup

My baby is sick.

littlej is home with a cold. A very nasty cold. She needs a food that will nourish both her body and soul, wrap her up in loving, steamy warmth and let her know she is protected and cared for.

Of course, the only food capable of all that is : Chicken Soup.

Jewish Penicillin, Avgolemono, Samgyetang, Ajiaco..... different names for the same thing, Liquid Love.

Here in Canberra, it's mid winter. Clothes hang limply on the line for days in a vain attempt to 'go green' and not use the dryer. We even have snow on the mountains. Bleak mornings with several degrees of frost, early darkness and a few hours of fantastic sunshine. Unfortunately the sunshine is weak, and unable to kindle any more warmth than a faint flickering of hope that spring is indeed on it's way.

But, back to the soup.... I make a yummy Asian style soup with lots of fresh bits and pieces
Start off with some chicken stock. The better the stock, the better the finished product. Never, ever, never use stock cubes. Promise me. Tetra packs of stock are OK, just check for gluten and stuff.

Place stock in pot with aromatics. I use: Lemon Grass, big chunk of Ginger, a couple of Garlic cloves, a finely sliced Kaffir Lime Leaf and some Corriander roots. I also add a slurp of Shouxing Wine as well, but that is optional.

Leave to simmer for a while to infuse. I like to leave it for at least half an hour.

Place in some sliced chicken breast or thighs, I use about 100gr per person, and simmer very gently until cooked through. Time to put in the drained corn and the tin creamed corn. This should only take about 10 mins or so until cooked now.

While this is happening, prepare the fresh bits and condiments. I use finely sliced carrot, celery, spring onions, fresh corriander and usually a large red chilli. I also like to add some crunch with fried shallots and fried garlic. These are availabe from Asian supermarkets and sometimes Coles and Woollies.

To help make this a complete meal and stretch it out some, I use noodles. Have I mentioned how much I love Changs products? They have a great range of Asian products that are all gluten free and available at Coles and Woollies too. I don't bother heating them up as the soup will do that nicely for me, I just divvy them up in the bowls.

I also prepare a couple of eggs lightly whisked with some Sesame Oil. This will help enrichen and thicken the end product

By now, the soup will be done, don't forget to fish out the corriander roots though. Just before serving, take the soup off the heat and stir in a thin stream of the beaten egg and oil mix. The colour will change and the soup will thicken slightly. Don't worry if there is the odd bit of stringy egg- it's all edible and yummy.

Layer up all the noodles, fresh bits and pieces and ladle on the hot soup.

Garnish with the fried onions and garlic, fresh corriander and a wedge of lime for a bit of zing.

There you have it.... Love in a bowl. Let the feeling of health and happiness wash over you from the inside out and steam your germs away!

So, Readers, what makes you feel better when you're unwell?


  1. Since writing this post, littlej in true generousity of spirit, has passed the bug onto me. Luckily I beleive in making big pots of love so there is always enough to go round.

  2. Oh this looks like the perfect picture of health and recovery in a bowl! I love that you added lemongrass :)

  3. Oh no! Sorry to hear your little one (and now you) are sick. I have a cold too, so that bowl of soup is really inviting. I've been having lots of ginger tea that's warming and soothes my throat. Hope you feel better soon!

  4. Aww aren't you a nice mum making this! I bet littlej will be better in no time! :D

  5. Hope you all make a speedy recovery. Chicken soup is my usual cure-all :)