4 cups Chicken Broth (Salted)
2 cans Coconut Milk
10-15 Shrimp with the shells
2 large Chicken Breast
6 Galangal* or Ginger sliced thin
2 tbsp Fish Sauce
3 tbsp Fresh Cilantro
FOR THE HEAT, EITHER
3 Birds eye chili*add 1 more for extra heat
1 tsp Red Thai Chili Paste
Thailand’s most famous soup recipe is healthy and simple to prepare. However if you’re not accustomed to cooking Thai food Bubba explains, then you’re going to have to source out some ingredients to make this recipe. Nice thing is that once you find them, you can store them and reuse them for creating this recipe or a number of other Thai recipes which call for similar ingredients. Its completely up to you if you want to cook this soup the traditional way using “Galangal”, “Lemongrass”, and Kaffir Leaves which most Asian food stores carry OR you can purchase a bottle of “Tom Yum paste” which most major groceries stores carry and this soup will turn out just as great. If you’re going to make it the more traditional way then Bubba recommends buying the “Galangal”, “Lemongrass”, and Kaffir lime leaves frozen because this way you will get twice the amount and then you will have plenty extra in stock for the next time to make this soup. You will find the two different cooking methods below.
To make the Soup:
Start by preparing the paste:
- You can either use the store bought “Tom Yum Paste” or make it yourself.
- To make yourself, start by tearing the “Kaffir lime leaves” in half to release there flavor. Then slice the bottoms of the lemongrass stalk off and peel away any dried outer layers. Then smash with a rolling pin to soften the stalk which will release the flavors. Cut open your “Thai Bird’s Eye Chilies” (wear gloves as there hot) and remove the seeds, or use “Red Thai Chili Paste” in replace of. And then also tear the “Kaffir lime leaves” in half to release there flavor too, and set aside it all aside.
- You will need the heads and shells of 15 prawns. Fry the prawn shells (with some olive oil) in a stockpot until pink, then add your four cups of Chicken Stock and bring to boil. Simmer covered on medium ~ low for 5 minutes, and discard shells. You can also add more shrimp shells/heads if you want a stronger shrimp stock.
- Soak your Vermicelli rice in warm water for 10 minutes, drain and set aside.
- Wash your Chicken thoroughly, slice and add it to the stock.
- Now put the bruised “kaffir limes leaves, lemongrass and galangal slices” or “Tom Yum Paste” in a pot and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes (never allowing it to boil) until the liquid is infused with all those delicious Thai flavors. Then remove the lemongrass, and galangal slices and discard.
- Next, add in the Vermicelli noodles, your shrimp, and then either the “Thai Bird’s eye chilies” or “Red Thai Chili Paste” cook till the shrimp is no longer pink.
- Remove from heat and stir in the cilantro and lime juice. Serve immediately
In Thailand Tom Yum soup is served with rice and or another Thai dishes. However I like to add Vermicelli noodles to this soup and it becomes a meal.
- Add in the lime last, you do not want to cook the lime because it will ruin the flavor.
- Lemongrass, Galangal and Kaffir lime leaves along with Thai Red Chili Paste can be found in most Asian grocery. And Tom Yum Soup Paste, can be found in most Supermarkets.
- What I do is buy my “Lemongrass”, “Galangal” and “Kaffir lime leaves” in frozen packs that my Asian grocery carries. This lasts much longer, and enables me to make this soup a few dozen times before I need to restock.
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