This is my take on a popular Thai soup, also known as hot and sour soup. I have designed this recipe to support the immune system. Prawns are a great source of zinc which is used by our white blood cells to fight disease, and shitake mushrooms contain beta-glucans which have been found to work with the gut to have a positive effect on the immune system. This is pure comfort and healing in a bowl. A really simple way to create this soup is to buy a good quality Tom Yum paste and use a teaspoon of that – details below.*
- 1 Litre Hot Water
- 1 Cube veg stock or one veg stock pot
- 2 stalks lemon grass two pounded and one finely chopped (tough outer skins removed)
- 1 inch Galangal – peeled and grated -if you can't find galangal use root ginger
- 4 Kaffir lime leaves
- 1 Fresh red chilli chopped
- 4 Tablespoons fish sauce
- 3 Spring onions sliced on an angle
- 150g Shitake or oyster mushrooms
- 4 Tbsp lime juice (Roughly 5 limes)
- 300g Large prawns
- 1 Tbsp Honey
- 1 Tsp Tamarind paste
- 150g Sugar snaps
- Coriander stalks and leaves
Pop the stock into the water and dissolve. Pour the stock into a soup pan and put on the hob on low heat.
Place the galangal, pounded lemongrass (two stalks), kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, coriander stalks and half the chilli (check how hot your chilli is as some of the bigger red chillies aren't particularly hot and you need a good warmth in the soup) into the water, bring to the boil and boil for around 5-10 minutes. Leave to stand and infuse for around an hour and then drain. Put the liquid back in the pan. Add the remaining chilli, lime juice, honey, mushrooms and tamarind and bring back to a simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes and taste. At this point add more honey or lime to taste - it should be hot and sour and have a good depth of flavour.
Once you are happy with the taste, add the spring onion, prawns and sugar snaps and simmer for a further 3 minutes. Serve with some chopped coriander sprinkled on top.
*If you want to use a tom yum paste, use a teaspoon of that in place of the galagal/ginger, lemon grass, lime leaves and tamarind paste.