Some people run marathons on weekends and we call them weekend warriors. I think I’m a weekend warrior in the kitchen! It is usually because my family has a proper sit down Sunday dinner every week; it’s really good for the family as we catch up with what’s happening in our lives and also subtly try to influence teenage thinking. Conversations are more eclectic than routine and I confess I enjoy our times together.
Eating at home on Sunday night has become a thing over the years because kid#2 used to get antsy on Sunday night as she would usually have a test or some homework she had to sort out before Monday. So it’s become a kind of habit, and I usually use this meal as a time to try out new recipes or to perfect old ones. Helper D who is a whiz in the kitchen is actually off on Sundays and so I have plenty of nice alone-time pottering around.
Sunday dinners are usually simple. Typically 1 meat, 1 vegetable and 1 soup dish. So typically Asian. The Asian way is that food needs to be hot, freshly cooked and satisfying. Of my 2 kids, kid#1 is the one who is finicky about his soup. It has to be piping hot and he’s been known to get D to reheat his soup just before eating. We also eat low carb in general so you won’t see too many root vegetables or rice or noodles even when we are eating Asian. So last night’s dinner was Instant Pot soy sauce braised chicken, stir fried shirataki noodles, vegetable omelette and meatball and seaweed soup. Kid#2 came home late, mopped up everything in the fridge then went back to residential college for the start of a new semester. Just when I was getting used to him hanging around and hoovering everything edible in the house, I have to adjust back to him not being around and lots of leftovers accumulating in the fridge.
The meatball and seaweed soup was really easy and simple. Part of the simplicity was because I already had homemade chicken stock in the freezer. I love how easy it is to make good quality stock in the Instant Pot and this can be used anytime when cooking.
Hubs has a thing about not eating pork and so this chicken meatball can easily be substituted by pork mince. The chicken meatballs must have been good because there weren’t any leftovers this morning in the fridge. This kind of soup is what I would classify as being comfort food. It’s not difficult to make at all but the hot soup and the simple ingredients give a certain homeliness and comfort. So here is the recipe, part of my new initiative to post simpler dishes to make life easier for readers who may not cook too often.
Dried seaweed can be found in most Chinese provision shops
Chicken Meatball and Seaweed Soup
- 300 g of minced chicken
- 1/4 cup of chopped chinese chives “koo chye“
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
- 2 tbsp almond flour
- 1/2 small egg, beaten
- 1/2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1/2 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tsp arrowroot flour
- 1 piece of dried seaweed
- 4 cups of chicken stock (homemade if possible; I use chicken carcasses, a knob of ginger and celery and carrots and throw into the instant pot for an hour)
- Mix the minced chicken, chopped chives, almond flour, garlic, egg, soy sauce, sesame oil, pepper and arrowroot flour together.
- Take a 1/2 tsp of the meatball mixture and microwave for 10-15 seconds. Do a taste test and adjust the seasoning accordingly.
- Form the mixture into 1 inch sized balls and place in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
- In the meantime, put the chicken stock into a pot and bring to a gentle rolling boil. Drop the meatballs one at a time into the stock. Simmer until the meatballs start to float.
- Add the seaweed to the pot, stir through and serve immediately.