Tom Yum Goong: A Taste of Thailand

Tom Yum Goong, or Spicy Thai Shrimp Soup, is a quintessential dish that embodies the bold flavors of Thai cuisine. Here’s a concise guide to crafting this delightful soup at home.


Ingredients:

10-12 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
4 cups chicken broth or shrimp stock
2 stalks lemongrass, cut into 2-inch pieces and bruised
3-4 kaffir lime leaves, torn


3-4 slices galangal or ginger
2-3 Thai bird’s eye chilies, crushed (adjust to taste)
200g straw mushrooms, halved
2-3 tablespoons fish sauce
1-2 tablespoons lime juice
1-2 tablespoons chili paste (nam prik pao)
1 small tomato, cut into wedges
Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish


Instructions:

    Prepare the Broth:

    In a pot, bring the chicken broth (or shrimp stock) to a boil.
    Add lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, and galangal (or ginger). Simmer for 5-10 minutes to infuse flavors.

    Add Seasonings:

    Stir in fish sauce, lime juice, and chili paste (nam prik pao). Adjust the amounts to achieve a balance of salty, sour, and spicy flavors.

    Cook Shrimp and Vegetables:

    Add shrimp and mushrooms to the pot. Cook until shrimp turn pink and opaque, about 3-5 minutes.

    Finish with Tomatoes and Herbs:

    Add tomato wedges and cook briefly until just softened.
    Remove from heat. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

    Serve:

    Ladle the hot soup into serving bowls.
    Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves for a burst of aroma and color.


Tips for Authenticity:

Ingredients: Use authentic Thai ingredients like galangal, kaffir lime leaves, and Thai bird’s eye chilies for the most genuine flavors.
Adjust Spice Levels: Tom Yum Goong is known for its spiciness, but you can adjust the amount of chilies according to your preference.
Balance Flavors: The soup should be a harmonious balance of sourness, spiciness, and saltiness, with a hint of sweetness from the shrimp.