Tom Yum Soup

Tom Yum Soup

The scented magic of lemon grass enforced with kaffir lime leaves makes this an outstandingly popular Thai speciality. For a non-vegetarian version use prawns but cook them only till they turn opaque because even the slightest over-cooking will make them tough.

Serves 4

0.5 tsp red chilli flakes
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tsp chopped ginger
0.5 tsp salt

1 tbsp oil
5 cups water
2 stock cubes - crushed
1" piece ginger - chopped finely or cut into paper thin slices
3 kaffir lime leaves - shredded
0.5 stalk lemon grass - cut into thin slices diagonally, see below
1 -2 babycorns - cut into paper thin slices
1/4 cup very tiny florets of broccoli
0.5 small carrot - cut into paper thin slices
2 fresh or dry red chillies - sliced
2-3 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp light soya sauce
3/4 tsp salt
1/4tsp pepper
2 tsp sugar

Prepare the paste by crushing all the ingredients of the paste.

In a deep pan, heat 1 tbsp oil. Add the above paste, lime leaves and lemon grass. Mix well.

Add water, sliced ginger, babycorn slices and the soup/stock cubes. After the boil, keep covered on low heat for 5 minutes.

Reduce heat. Add light soya sauce, salt, pepper and sugar to taste. Simmer for 1 minute.

Add mushrooms, carrots, broccoli and red chillies. Boil for 2 minutes on medium flame. Add lemon juice. Pour into individual bowls and serve hot.

About Lemon Grass
Only the light green stem of lemon grass is edible. The upper grass like portion has a lot of flavour but is not edible. So to use lemon grass, remove the grass portion. Discard 1" hard portion from the base of the stalk of lemon grass and then cut the stalk into thin slices. Tie the remaining grass portion into a knot. You can put this flavourful knot in the soup and discard it at serving time.

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