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Burmese Chicken Soup

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A rich creamy Burmese Chicken Soup (Khowse)

Last night’s dinner: A South African version of the Burmese dish, khow suey, or as I know it, khowse ser, a traditional noodle dish made with coconut milk, that has a soup-like consistency. In South Africa, it is commonly made with chicken This is one of my children’s favorite meals because egg noodles are involved, but also because they get to create their own version of the dish, by adding a variety of condiments/toppings, which is always fun.

The mildly sweet flavor of the coconut milk in the dish, plus the flexibility of creating your own flavor profile, and the varied textures of the toppings, makes khowse ser irresistible. I served it with crispy fried garlic, fried onion, fried cashews, chili flakes, coriander, chopped spring onion, crispy samosa pur/pastry, and lemon, and in the authentic Burmese recipe, a boiled egg is often served with it as well.
It’s a quick recipe though the toppings take time to prepare, so if you have the time, do it all. It’s definitely worth the effort.

Burmese Chicken Soup


  1. 1 medium onion, sliced
  2. 1 stick cinnamon
  3. 1/4 tsp turmeric
  4. 1/2 tsp ground ginger and garlic
  5. 1/4 tsp coriander powder
  6. 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  7. 1 tsp chili powder
  8. 1 medium tomato, liquidized
  9. 1/4-1/2 cup milk (optional)
  10. 1 tbsp chickpea/chana flour in 1 cup water
  11. 1 tin coconut milk
  12. Salt and pepper to taste
  13. 1 tbsp ghee
  14. Oil
  15. 1/2 pack of egg noodles OR Spaghetti



Fried samoosa pur
Fried onion OR raw chopped red onions
Fried cashews

  • Sauté the onion with the cinnamon in the oil and ghee.
  • Then add the ginger and garlic, spices, and seasoning. (If using chicken, add it in now and cook till almost done.
  • Add the tomato and cook for a few minutes.
  • Add the chickpea flour in water to the pot and let it boil for a few minutes.
  • Lower the temperature and add in the coconut milk.
  • If required, add more coconut milk or regular milk to thin down or adjust the flavor.
  • Boil the noodles and prepare the toppings.

How to enjoy the Khowse Soup

  • Dish into your bowl the amount of pasta you would like.
  • Top with as much khowse soup as desired.
  • The multiple accompaniments which enhance the texture & flavor are optional.
  • Top with chopped onions for pungency.
  • Sprinkle with chopped coriander leaves for freshness.
  • Squeeze with lemon for acidity.
  • Last, add fried samoosa pur for a crunch


Recipe credit: unknown

Prepared, tried, and tested Feriel Sonday

We have an entire category full of different Soup recipes to choose from. So enjoy it.

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2 thoughts on “Burmese Chicken Soup”

  1. This sounds so exotic! My hubby is on Keto so I will wait for him to cycle off for a bit to try it! I love all the topping ideas even though I have no idea what samosa pur is???

    • Dear Kim. Samusa pur is basically the outer shell, crusty and crunchy, part of the samoosa cut into chucks here. When you look it up you should be able to see what I mean. Let me know if you need more help b with it then I can get out for you.


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