Thai Coconut Curry Soup
This recipe, given to me by my cousin Michelle, is one of my all-time favorite dishes. It’s easy to make, but there are a few ingredients that might be a little difficult to find outside of an Asian grocery store. Parenthetical comments below are Michelle’s.
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil (I like to use olive oil)
2 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger root
1 stalk lemon grass, washed and cut into 2-inch segments (smash segments with the wide blade of a chef’s knife — like you would a clove of garlic — to extract maximum flavor)
2 tsp. red curry paste (use 1 tsp. for less spicy soup)
4 c. chicken broth
3 Tbsp. fish sauce
1 Tbsp. light brown sugar
3 cans (13.5 oz.) coconut milk (can do it with 2, but less coconut milk means spicier soup)
1/2 lb. fresh shitake mushrooms, sliced and/or sliced carrots or broccoli pieces
1 lb. med. shrimp, peeled and deveined or 1 lb. thinly sliced chicken
2 Tbsp. lime juice
1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro, to garnish
1. Heat oil in large pot on medium heat.
2. Cook and stir ginger, lemongrass, and curry paste in oil for 1 min.
3. Slowly pour chicken broth over mix, stirring.
4. Stir in fish sauce and brown sugar. Simmer for 15 min.
5. Stir in coconut milk and vegetables. Cook until mushrooms are soft – about 5 min. (If using carrots, will take longer. If using broccoli, will take less time.)
6. Add shrimp and cook until no longer translucent – about 5 min – or chicken until cooked through.
7. Stir in lime juice. Season with salt.
8. Remove lemon grass segments or advise guests not to eat (like a bay leaf that’s used for seasoning but shouldn’t be consumed)
8. Garnish with cilantro. Serves six.