1/4 cup stirred coconut milk (You will use the rest of a 14 oz./400 ml can in the stock flavouring below)
3 Tbsp finely chopped lemongrass
2 Tbsp sambal oelek
8 skin-on/bone-in chicken thighs
2 cups Chicken stock
5 cloves garlic, peeled and quartered
2 pieces large carrots, cut in to 4 pieces
1 large onion, peeled and quartered
1-inch piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp soy sauce
5 tsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp sugar
1 cup stirred coconut milk (or remainder of 14oz/400ml can)
8 oz rice noodles
2 cups thinly sliced English cucumber
1/2 cup fresh cilantro (or flat parsley) leaves
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/4 cup chopped peanuts, salted or unsalted
slices fresh lime
Marinate the chicken: In a small bowl, combine the 1/4 cup coconut milk, lemongrass and sambal oelek and stir to combine. Remove the skin from the chicken thighs and discard. (Use a paper towel to grab an edge and pull off). Place thighs in a large plastic storage bag and pour in marinade, tossing to coat chicken. Seal and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (or up to 8 hours).
Once chicken has marinated, remove chicken from marinade (you can discard marinade), and place chicken in a large pot or Dutch oven on the stove-top. Add the stock ingredients – the chicken stock, garlic, carrots, onion and ginger. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low (just enough to maintain a slow simmer), COVER and allow to barely for 1 – 1 1/2 hours, checking once in a while to make sure it’s just barely simmering, until chicken falls apart easily.
SLOW COOKER INSTRUCTIONS: Place chicken and stock ingredients in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for about 7 hours. Proceed as detailed below.
Remove chicken from stock and set aside. Strain remaining broth, discarding the solids and returning the clear broth to the pot. Add the stock flavouring ingredients – the soy sauce, fish sauce, lime juice, sugar and coconut milk. Stir to combine. Keep stock warm over low heat.
Remove meat from chicken and discard bones. Shred chicken in to bite-sized pieces. Set aside.
To serve: Divide noodles between serving bowls. Arrange sections on top of chicken, cucumber slices and peanuts. Garnish with green onion and cilantro. Pour 1/2 cup of the stock over-top of each bowl. Garnish with fresh lime slices and a dollop of Sambal Oelek in the middle for a little heat, if you’d like.