Monday, 24 June 2013

Cookbook: Kung Fu Panda Soup

I lied to you last week, dear reader; I told you a little white lie so as to sprinkle some spice onto this my cookblog. I wrote – in this here post on chopsticks and tormented Yulin dogs - that my Kung Fu Panda Noodle Soup was one of the triumphs of the Chinese kitchen. But of course Kung Fu Panda Noodle Soup is not genuine Chinese cuisine. It is Hollywood Gastronomy, i.e. the stuff that every poor sod of a parent has to concoct from time to time when his spoiled little brat starts to whine that he wants to eat the same stuff as his favourite cartoon hero. Think them Crabburgers of Spongebobsquarepants, Roast Boar from every last page of Asterix, Grilled Venison from Bambi, and so on…

In my case, the spoiled little brat was my godchild Hannibal (you remember Hannibal, don’t you, reader…? Him of the Hair Mayonaise!!?) Hannibal, then, a few years ago, a mere toddler still (who never so much as dreamed of wasting good Mayo on his coiffure…!) ran into my kitchen blaring he wanted the same soup that that martial Ailuropoda Melanoleuca from the Disney movie served in his father’s soup kitchen. ‘If you’re really such a star cook as you always pretend to be,’ the little blackmailer challenged Alfred B. Mittington, ‘I bet you surely know of the recipe and how to make it’ (never mind his grammar, dear reader: he goes to school in Spain…)

Young Hannibal showing off his best table manners...

Now of course I had not the slightest idea, because as far as I know there IS no recipe for the movie soup. But I was not going to tell the terrible toddler any such thing, for what Godfather in his right mind wants to risk his reputation of Omniscience and Omnipotence? So instead, I created this fine soupy dish out of nothing but my genius; a task made so much easier since in a splendidscene of the movie, Kung Fu Panda’s Daddy – who happens to be a Peking Duck as yet unroasted – announces he has a great secret to reveal to his son – a full grown Panda Bear -  and when we all expect him to confess that the Panda has been adopted, he merely confesses that There Is No Secret Ingredient In My Famous Noodle Soup….! So I understood that Anything Goes, and I set to work, and I demiurged the below heavenly manna.

You will be happy to hear of Alfred B. Mittington’s Kung Fu Panda Noodle Soup, dear reader; especially if you have bratty kids (and who doesn’t these days?) For this dish is easy to make, very yummie, and everybody can have a go at improving and improvisation. Just follow my basic recipe, and then change it to your heart’s delight according to your very own taste.

Alfred B. Mittington’s Kung Fu Panda Noodle Soup

Boil some 20 grams per person of your favourite noodles. Drain and set aside. Also boil 1 egg for every 2 people. Cool the eggs, peel them, and set aside as well (outside the fridge).

Before, next or meanwhile: bring to a boil 250 ml of clean water per person. Toss in 1 beef cube, a quarter onion, a laurel leaf, and a small clove of garlic. Lower the flame and let it simmer for 10 minutes. After that time, pour in a sturdy dash of soy sauce and add small spoonfuls of various oriental spices: cumin, ginger, curry, ground coriander, ground lemon grass, laos, and if you like (but very cautiously!): nutmeg, cinnamon, ground cloves etc etc. (Needless to say: you will have to figure out your favourite combination of spices by trial and error.) Let this concoction simmer for another 10 minutes (as you recite some choice lines from MacBeth…), then remove the pan from the stove and take the onion, bay leaf and garlic out of the broth.

Next: get one nice bowl per guest. Add noodles to each bowl. Put half a hard-boiled egg on top.

Then quick-fry in olive oil whatever finely chopped vegetables strike your fancy: onions, leaks, red pepper, green pepper, Chinese cabbage, carrots, and so on and so forth. Put a small quantity of each into each bowl. Then, if you happen to have them at hand: add some chives, or fresh coriander leaves, or fresh parsley.

Now return the broth to the stove, bring to a boil, and fill up each bowl with that spicy, crystal lymph. Serve while still steaming, and eat this fine soup, not with that inane invention that is the Chinese Chopstick, but with that splendid modern Western innovation of genius: the stainless steel fork! The Best of Both Worlds! Where Orient Meets Occident Without Accidents!

Some nice variants include: frying some bacon beforehand and crumbling that over the soup at the last moment; adding shrimp, either peeled or unpeeled; or pieces of roast chicken; or little meat balls with tandoori spices. But as said: do invent your own Mittington Kung Fu Panda Noodle Soup and toss in whatever strikes your fancy! As we all know: Alfred B. Mittington is a most Tolerant Chef!

Panicky Post Scriptum

Oh dear, doing a quick scan, I discovered that I have not been the only tormented (God)father who was blackmailed into inventing Kung Fu Panda Soup! It turns out there are dozens of other homonym recipes out there on the evil web! (How DARE these shameless scoundrels steal Alfred B. Mittington’s ideas before he has even published them?!)

Click here to see another Kung Fu Panda Soup recipe… And here for Kung Fu Panda Soup Revisited… And  then here for The Return of Kung Fu Panda Soup… And again here for KFPS the Ultimate Encounter… And here for oh f… And here… Oh dear…

(Needless to say: not one of these stands up to the Alfred B. Mittington variety!)

(Or does anybody dare to disagree and risk the Mittington Anger...??)


  1. Good to see you busy in the kitchen Mr. Mittington. And you're right, this does sound delicious. I will give it a try over the weekend. Hope you are well.


    1. Dear Ms Azra: as well as one can hope at my age. Thank you for asking. As for doing recipes: it was either cooking or boiling over because of the doings of the European Union. And the latter - once again at my age - is not a good idea. So here we are, slaving away in the kitchen to our heart's delight...

      Yours, Al