Silver Travel Cook Club - September 2020

364 people found this feature helpful

Silver Travel Cook ClubEmerald WaterwaysThis month’s Silver Travel Cook Club features a recipe for Vietnamese chicken noodle soup, inspired by sponsor Emerald Waterways' Majestic Mekong holiday, which begins in Siem Reap and ends in Ho Chi Minh City, including a stunning voyage on the river itself.

And you could win an Emerald Waterways goody bag and a copy of Vietnamese Cooking Made Easy: Simple, Flavorful and Quick Meals.

Majestic Mekong - 15 Day River Cruise and Tour

Emerald Waterways' Majestic Mekong itineraryYour journey begins in Siem Reap, where early mornings and ancient architecture promise to be the perfect combination. Angkor Wat is sure to fascinate, as is Angkor Thom and Ta Prohm.

Then begin your journey along the majestic Mekong River on board the magnificent Emerald Harmony Star-Ship. Discover Phnom Penh and visit a family-owned silk-producing factory, and attend a scarf-weaving workshop in Long Khanh Island.

Vibrant Ho Chi Minh City beckons for a two-night stay, where you will uncover the Cu Chi Tunnels and enjoy an insightful included city tour.

Emerald Harmony - Mekong River
Angkor Wat

Departure dates and pricing:

Emerald Waterways 2021 and 2022 Vietnam, Cambodia & Mekong River Cruising collection is now on sale, along with a fantastic launch offer.

Enjoy generous savings of up to £1,500 per couple, plus enjoy unlimited on board drinks during your time on board Emerald Harmony, courtesy of a free Premium Drinks Package.

What’s more, choose to pay your holiday balance in full by 31 October 2020 and receive an additional £200 per person Early Payment Discount.

From £2,945 per person, departing 19 May 2021 (price includes all relevant discounts).

Terms and conditions apply.

Recipe: Pho - Vietnamese chicken noodle soup

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Serves: 6


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 shallots - sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves - sliced
  • 1 lemongrass stalk - chopped
  • 2.5cm piece ginger - sliced
  • 3 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon Chinese five spice
  • ¼ teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1.5 litres chicken stock
  • 3 large chicken breasts
For serving:
  • 500g rice noodles
  • 4 spring onions - sliced
  • 1 carrot - shredded or thinly sliced
  • 150g mung bean sprouts
  • bunch coriander - chopped
  • small bunch mint leaves - chopped
  • 1 red chilli - thinly sliced
  • 1 fried shallot
  • 1 lime - cut into wedges


Chicken Pho by Guilhem Vellut from Paris, France / CC BYHeat the oil in a frying pan on medium heat and cook the shallots and garlic for 5 minutes or until caramelised and golden brown.

Using a large pan, add the caramelised shallots, garlic, lemongrass, ginger, star anise, cinnamon stick, coriander seeds, Chinese five-spice, peppercorns, sugar, fish sauce, chicken stock and chicken breasts. Cover with a lid and simmer for 15 minutes.

Whilst chicken is simmering, cook the noodles until just cooked. Rinse under cold water to cool and stop them sticking together. Drain and divide between serving bowls.

Strain the soup through a sieve and discard the spices. Shred the chicken and keep to one side. Return soup to the pan and bring to the boil. Season to taste.

To serve, ladle piping hot soup into bowls of noodles and chicken, and top with the spring onion, carrot, bean sprouts, and herbs, chilli and the crispy shallots. Finally, serve with a lime wedge.

Authentic and truly tasty!

Emerald Waterways goodie bagWin Emerald Waterways goody bag and a copy of Vietnamese Cooking Made EasyHow to win an Emerald Waterways goody bag and a copy of Vietnamese Cooking Made Easy

Soups are wonderfully warming in winter and suitably chilly when they are eaten cold in the summer. And sometimes, when travelling, quite unexpected in flavour and texture.

Tell us about your favourite soup, where you’ve eaten it and just what makes it so special.  The best entry will win a copy of Vietnamese Cooking Made Easy.

Read more about all of our Silver Travel Cook Club recipes.


364 people found this feature helpful

Did you find this feature helpful? YES
Enjoy reading other articles and reviews on this subject.
Read more

What are your thoughts?

To leave a comment, please Sign in

Other Members' Thoughts - 28 Comment(s)

  • Woofles
    12 months ago
    Sweet and sour soup - this was my introduction to Chinese food many, many years ago and a firm favourite ever since! Knowing I liked soup my friend bought it to convince me to try something new.
  • pumpkinpete
    12 months ago
    Wonton Soup
    love the above whe i was in Northen China with porks was so good but the one in the uk are never the same
  • Mingyums
    12 months ago
    My favourite soup dish is laksa, it's spicy and coconutty, perfect for summer memories during a dark winter night!
  • Sararose
    about 1 year ago
    I often make soup using my slow cooker. I just throw in any vegetables that are lurking in the fridge or in the drawer! They are peeled and chopped up and I add a tin (or2) of chopped tomatoes with mixed herbs and a vegetable cube. When cooked I save half and puree the rest. Added together it makes an interesting and tasty meal AND it is different every time!
  • HenDdraig
    about 1 year ago
    I love Thai Tom Yum soup - hot and sour soup. It's quite a simple soup to make, but never tastes as good as it does in Thailand. I last had some in the street food market in Bangkok's China Town district, earlier this year when 'normal' was just about still with us. Slurping a bowl of perfect spicy, tangy, delicious and clean flavoured soup whilst sat on a stool at the side of the road, watching the Bangkok residents pick up their supper on the way home. A nice way to experience soup!
  • Hardyplant
    about 1 year ago
    My favourite is creamy courgette soup made using up our glut of home grown courgettes. We've been using this Mediterranean recipe for several years and the pack of Dolcelatte that's added makes it really delicious and creamy, so we omit the cream that is also in the recipe. During lockdown it was good to work through last year's batch that had been frozen. We're currently building up a new stock in the freezer.
  • SilverTravelEditor
    about 1 year ago
    Thanks for all the mouthwatering 'soupy' comments so far this month, and lovely to see quite a few new participants on this Silver Travel Cook Club page.

    @Leah50 - I love the name and concept of 'Maltese Widow's soup'.

    @philatel - couldn't agree more about a soup enjoyed somewhere else not quite tasting the same back here. I was lucky to live in Bermuda for most of the 1980s. One of their local dishes is the legendary fish chowder, particularly when enjoyed at the Lobster Pot restaurant and laced with a generous tot of Gosling's rum and Outerbridge's fiery sherry peppers. Yum. But try to recreate it on a cold November night in England, and it loses rather a lot of its appeal.

    Please keep these soupy comments flowing to be in with a chance of winning a copy of 'Vietnamese Cooking Made Easy' AND a rather fetching goody bag from our sponsor Emerald Waterways.
  • LizCraw5
    about 1 year ago
    i need more variety in my cooking and this looks ideal
  • monk
    about 1 year ago
    Parsnip and apple strong favourite having no longer cooking apple tree in garden don't make as often. Have just made some sweet potato and butternut squash mouth watering from its delicious smell.
  • frozen
    about 1 year ago
    Tom Yum soup from Thailand - made on holiday there on a Thai cookery course from fresh ingredients - the aroma and taste were fantastic!
  • SilverTravelUser_2639
    about 1 year ago
    My mam's cawl. Lovely.
  • Jeannies
    about 1 year ago
    Sounds great when in Paris asked for chein soup instead of poule soup no wonder got strange looks.
  • philatel
    about 1 year ago
    My favourite soups are Minestrone and Mulligatawny. My favourite soup when in France is French Onion Soup - have ordered it in London but it never tastes the same.
  • Leah50
    about 1 year ago
    Soppa-tal-armla, Maltese Widow's soup. My Maltese husband came from a poor family, his Mum cooked on a primus stove for a family of fourteen, the ingredients came mostly from her little walled garden. How that wonderful woman made such delicious meals from next to nothing I'll never know. I've never forgotten that first taste, served in a cracked bowl with fabulous crusty bread & a glass of ice-cold water from the well.
  • Ozdevon
    about 1 year ago
    Tomato soup eaten at home with freshly baked bread & of course the tomatoes from our garden....what a fresh taste.
  • Ruth
    about 1 year ago
    This looks very tasty
  • GH53
    about 1 year ago
    I love a lentil dhal soup with some chopped chicken if I have any available.
  • Tuppton
    about 1 year ago
    I loved fish chowder soup.. I had it many years ago in california on holiday..
  • you
    about 1 year ago
    I do not have a favorite soup....I tend to throw anything lurking unused from the 'fridge-cupboard into the cookpot and see what surprising results I get....
  • Christinawad
    about 1 year ago
    My favourite soup is tomato but my favourite soup eating time was when my brother made a concoction when he first got married and had a soup maker as a gift. The soup was awful but the love, the preparation and the pride that was put into it made it a soup to remember.
  • Woofles
    about 1 year ago
    Butternut squash and chilli soup made at home in our soup maker. It is the first soup we perfected which was a real success as we’d burnt many others beforehand (no idea how as the soup maker was supposed to be idiot proof!!!!!)
  • office3342
    about 1 year ago
    Love a seafood chowder. Ate a wonderful one last month in Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. Special soup, special company!
  • DianaS
    about 1 year ago
    One of my favourite soups made last year was pumpkin with potato, I think there is 1 container remaning in my freezer, yummy!
    Having visited Vietnam and loved their soups - do not know any of the names of them - it will be interesting to try to make some of them. Thank you
  • Smiler78
    about 1 year ago
    One of my favourite soups is Cullen Skink which my husband Rob and I had (with a hunk of delicious wholemeal bread) in a little place in Thurso. It brings back many happy memories of that lovely holiday and the beautiful dramatic landscape of Scotland. On our return Rob went shopping for smoked haddock and other ingredients and replicated the soup which was heavenly. Although the holiday was 12 years ago he still makes it and it is especially comforting on a cold winters day.
  • Larsonsmum
    about 1 year ago
    My favourite soup is Hot & Sour Soup. Fond memories of eating it in Miri in Sarawak when we lived there in the late 70s.