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Aromatic Chicken Broth with Soy-Infused Eggs
Aromatic Chicken Broth with Soy-Infused Eggs
Over 2 hours

This hearty chicken broth recipe from Tom Aikens takes inspiration from a number of different cuisines of east and southeast Asia, featuring fragrant flavourings like lemongrass and lime leaves and garnishing the dish with soy-cured eggs for an umami richness.

Recipe courtesy of

Chicken Broth

  • 10 chicken drumsticks
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 1 leek, halved (green top taken off and washed)
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 whole red chillies, halved (keep the seeds)
  • 1 large pinch of toasted coriander seeds
  • Sprigs of thyme, parsley, coriander stalks
  • 2 sticks of lemongrass, bashed and chopped
  • 1 bulb of garlic, halved
  • Plenty of water to cover
  • A small strip of fresh lime peel
  • 1 pinch of dried chilli flakes
  • 5 dried or fresh lime leaves
  • Small piece of ginger, finely sliced
  • 15g coarse sea salt
  • Fresh black pepper

Soy Eggs

  • 100ml soy sauce
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 small piece of ginger, finely chopped
  • 50g sugar
  • 30ml sesame oil
  • 50ml rice wine vinegar
  • 250ml water
  • 6 eggs

Peanut Marinade

  • 30g of peanut butter
  • 10g light soy sauce
  • 35g tahini paste
  • 10g rice vinegar
  • 25g honey
  • 7g sesame oil
  • 1g salt

Chicken Breasts

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 2g Maldon salt

To Serve

  • Thinly sliced mangetout or green beans
  • Cooked noodles
  • Sliced spring onions
  • Thinly sliced broccoli
  • Picked coriander leaves
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • Toasted crushed peanuts (fry these in some sesame oil to intensify the flavour, if desired)
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  1. To make the chicken broth, place the drumsticks in a large saucepan or stock pot and cover with water. Bring to a simmer, skimming away the scum from the surface of the water, then add the remaining ingredients to the pan (except the lemongrass, coriander, lime leaves, and lime peel).
  2. Cook for approximately 40—50 minutes until the chicken is tender, then add the lemongrass, coriander, lime peel and lime leaves, and cook for a further 10 minutes. 
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and remove the drumsticks from the broth. Place them into a colander, leave to cool for 15—20 minutes, then remove the skin and flake all of the meat from the bones, ensuring you discard any bones or pieces of cartilage that you come across. Pass the stock through a fine sieve and reserve the stock and chicken together in the fridge.
  4. To make the marinade for the eggs, fry the ginger and garlic together in a dash of sesame oil in a pan on a low-medium heat for 2—4 minutes, until just cooked. Place the remaining ingredients (except the water) in a small saucepan, bring to the simmer, and then add the water. Leave to cool.
  5. Cook the eggs in a pan of quickly-simmering salted water for 5—10 minutes, then place immediately into iced water to chill for at least 5 minutes. Crack an egg on a chopping board and then peel underwater in the bowl (this makes the job much simpler), then repeat with the remaining eggs. Submerge the eggs in the soy marinade, the longer you leave them the better the flavour will be.
  6. To marinate the chicken breasts, whisk together all of the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Cut the chicken breast into 1cm thick strips, cutting them slightly at an angle, and place in the marinade, along with the Maldon salt, stirring to coat. Leave to marinate for up to 24 hours.
  7. Preheat the oven to 160°C. Spread the chicken pieces out on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 10—12 minutes, until cooked through.
  8. To assemble, prepare all of the accompaniments and bring the chicken broth to a simmer on the hob. Place the noodles, vegetables, chicken, and other garnishes into deep serving bowls, as pictured. Slice the eggs in half and place three halves into each bowl, seasoning the cut sides with a little salt. Pour the hot broth over the top and garnish with some sesame seeds, peanuts and coriander leaves. 

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