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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Thai-style hot and sour soup...

So, Sherri has been wanting hot and sour soup. I prefer the Thai-style to Chinese, and so that's what she got. I wanted to see how I'd do at recreating the Thai street soup "tom yam" I had while there, so I use odd asian fake meats (veggie kidney, crab and mushroom "pork" balls) as well as grilled and cubed tofu. The fake organ meat really made this, uhhh... "authentic", which means Sherri hated everything but the broth and veggies ;)

Hot and Sour Soup is a world favorite. This recipe is based upon the one found at, but with a few key differences, most notably the doubling of the recipe to make enough soup for the next day!

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes


• 12 cups (three boxes) "chik'n"-style broth - Serves 8 as an appetizer, or 2 for main entree (with left-overs)
• 8 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 thumb-size piece galangal or ginger, grated or finely sliced into matchstick-like pieces (skip the galangal, imo; the stuff befuddles me...)
• 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
• 2 Tbsp. red miso paste (in place of fish sauce)
• 3 Tbsp chilli & garlic paste
• 1/4 cup sweet chilli sauce (like Dan's bento sauce)
• 2 Tbsp chilli oil
• 1/4 cup rice vinegar
• 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
• 4 kaffir lime leaves (frozen, fresh, or dried) OR 2 Tbsp. lime juice
• 1 heaping Tbsp. cornstarch dissolved in 3 Tbsp. water (whisk)
• 1-2 cups mixed "critter-bits" plus tofu

VEGETABLES (choose from the following, or add your own selection):

• 1 red or green bell pepper
• handful fresh or dried shiitake mushrooms (if dried, soak them in hot water for several hours)
• 1 cup Chinese cabbage such as bok choy, roughly chopped
• handful of fresh or frozen spinach
• frozen or fresh broccoli
• bamboo shoot strips


• Serve soup over pre-cooked rice noodles. We used a very thick and chewy kind (not flat-wide rice-stick. Think more like "rice-udon") that we were dubious of before hand, but worked out most excellently, although rice-stick would work well.


• handful of fresh coriander OR fresh basil
• lime
• mung bean sprouts


1. Heat broth in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, galangal or ginger, soy sauce, miso paste, chilli, vinegar, brown sugar and lime leaves. Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium heat and allow to simmer while you add next ingredients.
2. Grill meat/tofu on a cast-iron grill or the like to give it some character, then add it to the pot, plus the vegetables. Simmer 3-5 minutes, or until vegetables are lightly cooked (but still on the crisp side).
3. Prepare the cornstarch thickener by using some broth. Whisk until smooth, then add to soup pot and stir to blend.
4. Ladle the hot soup into bowls (by itself or over noodles) and garnish with fresh coriander or basil.

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