Tom Yum (Thai soup with shrimp)

Ever since I learned how easy Tom Yum is to make it’s been in steady rotation at my house.

The use of aromatics like lemongrass, ginger, and onion make an incredibly flavorful soup in no time! It’s hot, sour, spicy, and everything you need during this colder weather. Traditionally this recipe calls for specialty ingredients like galangal and kaffir lime leaves, but you can easily substitute for the ingredients below.

You will need:

  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 stalk of lemongrass (you only want to use the bottom of the stalk, about 3-4 inches)
  • a 4 inch nub of ginger
  • 2 small ripe tomatoes, quartered (Roma tomatoes work fine, or tomatoes on the vine)
  • 4-6 brown mushrooms, quartered
  • 1/2 onion, sliced
  • juice of 1 lime, plus more lime for garnish
  • 2 teaspoons chili oil
  • 2-3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 8-10 shrimp, depending on size
  • cilantro (optional for garnish)
  • sliced Thai chilies in vinegar (optional for garnish)

Bring the coconut milk and water to a boil, along with the lemongrass, ginger, and onion. Once it’s gotten to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Then add your tomatoes, mushrooms, fish sauce, lime juice, and chili oil. Simmer for another 15 minutes.

Taste your soup and season to your liking. If it needs more salt, add a bit more fish sauce. If you want it more sour, add some more lime juice, etc. Once the soup is seasoned well, add your shrimp and cook until they’re just done, about 5 minutes.

Serve in bowls with an additional lime wedge for garnish, and top with chopped cilantro. If you need even more heat and acid (like I do), serve with sliced Thai chilies in vinegar.

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