Soto Ayam or Saoto soup as it is known in Suriname is Indonesian for Chicken Soup.
Divine chicken soup to be correct and this has got to be one of my favourite dishes in the world. I used to make this every Sunday until my husband put a stop to this. Most of the time I make a pot for myself, and whenever I have an upset tum this is the only thing that gets me through the day.
Also good for sweating out colds, have a hot cup of soto ayam with loads of sambal and you’ll feel better in no time!
Ingredients for a big pot of soup
2 l water
2 Indonesian bay leaves (salam leaves)
1 big onion, chopped
5 cm ginger root, thinly sliced
5 cm galangal root, thinly sliced
2 large chicken stock cubes
5 black pepper corns
2 lemongrass stalks
2 chicken leg quarters, rinsed
Start by bringing the water to a boil in a large soup pot. Then add all the ingredients to the water, cover the pot and reduce heat to low. Simmer until the chicken is done.
Remove the chicken from the soup and let it cool off. Skim fat from the broth. Also scoop the rest of the ingredients out of the pot, leaving nothing but the broth.
Shred the chicken after it’s cooled off, heat oil in a pan and bake the chicken shreds until golden brown.
Soto Ayam is served with shredded chicken, potato chips (available at the supermarket), fried shallots, beansprouts, cabbage (thinly sliced), a boiled egg, cooked rice, sambal and I finish it off with some chopped coriander. Put these ingredients in individual bowls.
The idea is that everyone puts their desired amount of all the ingredients in a bowl, the reheated soup is then poured over it, sambal added to taste and you’re ready to enjoy what I think is the best soup ever.
If you’d like to make my favourite sambal, go to any Chinese, Thai or Indonesian toko (I go to those in China Town) and buy a bottle of sweet Kecap Manis.
Finely chop 3 cm ginger root, 2 garlic cloves and 1-2 Scotch bonnets. Pour a cup of Kecap Manis into a pan and add a cup of tea (yes tea!) and bring to a boil. Add the ginger, garlic and Scotch bonnets and stir. Add 1-2 ts sugar and slowly boil the sambal until it is slightly thicker.
I’m having soto ayam today and I seriously cannot wait for dinner tonight!