Suzanne Liu's Chicken and lemon-grass soup



15 min


4 Servings

* PLUS Cooking time: 35 minutes, Standing Time: 5 minutes

Chef Suzanne Liu of Montreal’s Soy restaurant grew up on her grandmother’s cooking in Hong Kong. “Although she was poor and used inexpensive foods, her meals were always delicious,” Liu says. “The secret is fresh ingredients, like the lemon grass that boosts the flavour of this broth.”


  • 6 cups reduced-salt chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 star anise
  • 3 stalks lemongrass , white part only, smashed
  • 4 kaffir-lime leaves
  • 1-in. piece of ginger , minced
  • 2 garlic cloves , minced
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 200 to 400 g rice noodles
  • 4 cups bean sprouts
  • sprigs of Thai basil or cilantro
  • 1 lime , cut into wedges


  • Pour chicken broth into a large pot. Stir in fish sauce, star anise, lemon grass, kaffir-lime leaves, ginger, garlic and pepper. Bring to a boil, then add chicken. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer until chicken is cooked or feels springy when pressed, about 20 min.
  • Meanwhile, separate noodles and place in a large bowl. (If you like your soup with less broth, use more noodles.) Cover completely with boiling water. Let stand until tender, 5 to 10 min. Stir frequently. Drain and set aside.
  • Remove chicken from broth and set on a cutting board. Cover pot and let broth continue to simmer for 15 min. When chicken is cool enough to handle, cut into bite-sized pieces. Strain broth into another pot and discard spices. Taste and add more salt if needed. Divide noodles, chicken and broth into 4 large bowls. Top with bean sprouts and basil. Tuck a lime wedge on the side of each bowl for squeezing overtop.

Nutrition (per serving)

  • Calories
  • 319,
  • Protein
  • 25 g,
  • Carbohydrates
  • 51 g,
  • Fat
  • 2 g,
  • Fibre
  • 3 g,
  • Sodium
  • 1659 mg.