A few days ago FB I had the following conversation:
“And today I’ll have tom yum with corn”
“Sounds yum yum”
“And it is hot hot.”
Excellent summary, to be honest. If you do not know the tom yum soup, it is high time to try. In the stores tom yum paste is available, and it really shorten the preparation time. But for vegetarians it is not a good solution – the paste is prepared with chicken broth (sometimes beef) and contain fish sauce.
Fish sauce can quite easily be replaced with a mixture – two parts of vegetable broth and one part of soy sauce.
The second troublesome ingredient is galangal. If you do not have access to a galangal paste (which you can often get on the stands of Asian food and in stores like Cuisines of the World), or do not want to risk the purchase of an unknown food, replace galangal with ginger. Isn’t that simple?
Tom yum name derivates from two Thai words – tom, which means to boil and yum, which literally means mix. But yum is used as name of sour type of salad, which (except the main ingredient) contains finely cut out scallions, soy sauce, lime juice, sugar and chili. So a set of spices, which we’ll be using to make the tom yum soup.
Varieties of tom yum is a lot. The most famous is the shrimp – tom yum goong. Tom yum pla is pure fish soup, served with rice. We also have a tom yum gai (kai) – with chicken.
And some (and more) others. I’ll show you a tom yum with autumn vegetables – corn, Brussels sprouts and chanterelles.
Unlike many Thai dishes, to prepare tom yum, we cook spices in the broth. Let me remind you that usually spices are fried or roasted, and only later added the rest of the ingredients, eg. Broth.
2 stalks lemongrass (you can replace with zest of one lemon – will replace 2 stalks of grass)
4 kafir leaves (1 kafir leaf can be replaced by adding to the soup 1 bay leaf + 0.25 teaspoons lime zest + a pinch of thyme)
1 tbs of galangal paste or 3 cm piece galangal or ginger
2 – 3 red chilli peppers
2 teaspoons soy sauce (tamari)
1.5 teaspoons brown sugar
juice of two limes (or lime and lemon, if we use them as a substitute for lemon grass and kafir leaves)
1 teaspoon chili oil
15 dag chanterelles
grains from one corn cob
15 dag of Brussels sprouts (small)
a few small potatoes
1.5 l vegetable broth
- Boil broth and, when boiling, add the chopped lemon grass (approx. 2 – 3 cm pieces), kafir leaves, finely chopped galangal (ginger) and, also chopped (and without seeds), chili.
- Cook covered, on medium heat, for approx. 15 minutes.
- Add the soy sauce and sugar.
- Add the potatoes (peeled and diced), Brussels sprouts and corn grains.
- Cook for approx. 8 – 10 minutes.
- Add the chanterelles and cook for another 5 – 8 minutes.
- Just before serving, add the lime juice and chili oil.
Before we give the soup, you should remove the lemon grass and kafir leaves – they’re for taste only, not to eat.