Tom Yum Gai – Thai Chicken Soup

This is the most popular soup served mostly as an appetizer in U.S. Thai restaurants. It has a very distinct hot and sour flavor made with fresh ingredients such as lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, and cilantro. For those that prefer seafood, replace the chicken with shrimp.

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Tom Yum Gai - Thai chicken soup

serves 3-4

2 boneless chicken breast – cut into 2 inch strips
6 cups water
1 stalks lemon grass – cut into 2 inch pieces. Use back of your knife to pound lemon grass a couple times to release flavor.
1 piece galangal (2 inches)
6 small shallots – cut in half (substitute with 2 small onion)
2 medium tomatoes – diced (substitute with 1 can diced tomatoes – no salt added)
1 tsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp. chili paste
3 Tbsp. tamarind concentrate
3 Tbsp. fish sauce
½ cup celery
½ cup carrots
2 kaffir lime leaves
¼ cup cilantro – roughly chopped

1. lemongrass, galangal, shallots and tomatoes
In medium pot on high heat, bring water to a boil. Add lemongrass, galangal, shallots and tomatoes. Cook for 5 mins.

2. chicken
Add chicken and cook 10 mins.

3. fish sauce, sugar, tamarind concentrate, chili paste, onion, celery and carrots
Add fish sauce, sugar, tamarind concentrate, chili paste along with onion, celery and carrots. Cook for 5 mins.

4. mushrooms
Add mushrooms and boil for another 2 minutes. Turn off heat.

5. kaffir lime leaves, and coriander
Add, kaffir lime leaves and coriander. Let stand for 5 mins.

6. final steps
Before serving, remove the lemongrass and galangal (not edible).

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