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Tom Kha Gai is one of the two most well-known soups to come out of Thailand, the other being Tom Yum Goong (hot prawn soup). It is deliciously fragrant, aromatic, silky smooth and so full of all our favourite
Thai herbs like lemongrass, kaffir lime and coriander. The use of galangal is quite integral in this soup.  It’s from the ginger family but has a far more astringent and potent flavour. Thai food’s all about the delicate balance between spicy, sweet, sour and salty and this soup certainly achieves this. This recipe will allow you to recreate a classic Thai dish one craves for, without having to go all the way to Thailand.  It’s a wonderfully subtle way to introduce those beautiful aromatic fresh Thai flavours to the whole family.

PREP TIME:  10 MINS

COOK TIME:  30 MINS

SERVES:  5-6 PEOPLE

INGREDIENTS

500ml of good-quality chicken stock
800ml coconut milk (2 cans)
6-8 slices of galangal (available at U-Plus Asian Supermarket at The Landing)
6 whole lime leaves (scrunch in your hand before putting in the soup to
extract more flavour)
2 stalks of lemongrass, bruised
3-4 whole green chillis
500g skinless chicken breast, sliced
4 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp fish sauce
3-4 fresh crushed coriander roots (optional, but adds delicious fresh
flavour)
12 straw mushrooms (or just use brown or button and quarter them)

GARNISH
3 lime leaves, rib removed and thinly sliced
1 thinly-sliced red chilli
1 handful of chopped fresh coriander
Chilli oil (optional)

METHOD

  1.  Place the stock, galangal, lime leaves, lemongrass, coriander roots and green chillis in a pot and bring to the boil.  Gently simmer for around 20 mins to allow the flavours to infuse.

2.  Add in coconut milk.  Once this comes back up to heat, add in chicken and mushrooms.  Simmer for around 6-7 mins, or until the chicken is tender.

3.  Take off the heat and add in lime juice and fish sauce.  Adjust according to your taste.

4.  Pour evenly into bowls, add the garnish and serve immediately.  Serve with a side bowl of jasmine rice for a more substantial meal.

NB:  Vegetarians can replace the chicken stock and chicken with vege stock and some other vegetables or prawns.  Ensure to put the prawns in just at the end so you do not overcook.