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How to cook sopas AKA the ultimate Filipino comfort food, according to Coco Quizon

How to cook sopas AKA the ultimate Filipino comfort food, according to Coco Quizon

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Sopas or chicken noodle soup is a quintessential Filipino dish that you’d find at every handaan, next to pansit and spaghetti (Pinoy style). It’s a staple alongside molo or arroz caldo during rainy days, a comforting bowl that warms the tummy and banishes the blues brought on by inclement weather.

[READ: The difference between lugaw, goto, and arroz caldo]

It is also Coco Quizon’s favorite recipe, which she shares on our Instagram TV series Comfort Kitchen. Growing up, she recalls that she used to enjoy it with a childhood drink.

“My chicken noodle soup [is] equal parts chicken, pasta, veggies and soup—deliciousness! Eat it on a hot day, on an airconditioned day. Best served with your favorite childhood drink,” says Coco.

The secret to her version—and for sure every mom’s version out there—is a hearty chicken broth, preferably made from scratch. To make hers, Coco sears chicken thigh quarters seasoned with salt, pepper, cayenne, garlic powder and onion powder until the skin browns. Only then will she take it out and saute the onion and garlic on the chicken fat-infused oil. 

The rest is a labor of love, from painstakingly shredding the chicken to patiently waiting for the broth to come together.

 

Chicken noodle soup

Ingredients

1kg chicken thigh quarters skin-on
2 pcs large white onion, coarsely chopped)
2 pcs large carrots, coarsely chopped)
2 stalks celery, coarsely chopped
6 cloves garlic, diced
2 chicken broth cubes
3 tbsp oil
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp cooking cream
1L water
Salt
Pepper
Garlic powder
Onion powder
Cayenne powder
250g short pasta of choice

Preparation

  1. In a large pot over medium heat, add oil. Once hot, place lightly seasoned chicken skin-side down to brown. Add garlic powder, onion powder and cayenne. Flip the chicken once the skin has color and repeat seasoning
  2. When the chicken has sufficiently cooked, remove from heat and set aside. Add the onion and garlic to the same pot and saute until the onion becomes translucent
  3. To create the chicken broth, bring the chicken pieces back into the pot. Add 1L water and 2 chicken cubes. Let boil until chicken is cooked (8-10 minutes). Season lightly with salt and pepper
  4. Once chicken is cooked and broth is a nice yellow color, remove chicken pieces and set aside for shredding. Add remaining vegetables to the pot and simmer
  5. After a few minutes, add the cream to the pot and mix until incorporated. Keep stirring.
  6. After the meat is shredded, bring the bones back into the soup to maximize the flavor
  7.  Add the pasta once the vegetables have reached a point where they are soft but not enough to pierce a fork all the way through. Cook through. Remove chicken bones
  8. Once pasta is cooked and you are ready to serve, place soup in bowl and enjoy

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Writer: CHRISTIAN SAN JOSE

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