Until I worked with Thai chefs I thought Tom Yum soup was Tom Yum soup. There are actually many variations; all different and delicious in their own way. Now here’s a quick Thai lesson as I see it:
Tom Kha = Creamy soup (coconut cream or evaporated milk)
Tom Yum = Clear soup
Gai = Chicken
Goong = Prawns
Talay = Seafood
Here is my recipe for my favorite Thai soup, Tom Kha Goong, or spicy prawn and lemongrass soup with coconut and mushrooms. Feel free to use chicken stock but I actually prefer to shell the prawns and use the heads and shells to make my own prawn stock.
Tom Kha Goong
Thai prawn, coconut and lemongrass spicy soup
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- 200g Prawns
- 800ml Chicken Stock (or prawn stock)
- 2 sticks Lemongrass
- 3-4 Fresh red chilli
- 100g Straw mushroom (canned is still ok)
- 100g punnet Cherry tomatoes
- 3cl Garlic
- 1knob ginger (or galangal)
- 2-4 Limes (juice)
- Fish sauce (nam pla) - to taste
- 1/2 bunch Coriander
- 200ml Coconut cream (or evaporated milk)
- 6 Kaffir lime leaves
- Peel and slice the ginger, slice the garlic and slice the lemongrass and chilli (reserve some chilli for garnish).
- Pound lightly the kaffir lime leaves with your knife handle to release some of the oils.
- Bring the stock to the simmer and add the ginger, garlic, kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass and chilli. Infuse for 15-20 minutes. Halve the mushrooms and add to the soup with the whole cherry tomatoes and prawns and gently cook until the prawns are just done.
- Add the coconut cream.
- Season with some fish sauce and lime juice and a little sugar if you like.
- Transfer to bowls and finish with some of the reserved chilli and coriander.
MacLean Fraser http://macleanfraser.com/
- Bangkok,Thailand (travellingchefs.wordpress.com)
- Why I love Thai Food