Tom Yum Goong (tom yum soup with shrimp) might be the most famous version of this Thai hot and sour soup, but the chicken version is just as delicious. There's a little more to it than simply substituting chicken for shrimp, as Thai people have figured out the best flavour pairings for these two different proteins.
Tom yum is a brothy, spicy and sour soup, infused with the classic Thai herbs: lemongrass, galangal and makrut (kaffir lime leaves).
Got ingredients leftover? You must make this easy tom kha gai recipe. It has uses all the same herbs, but is milder and creamier with the addition of coconut milk. If you love tom yum, I know you will also love tom kha gai.
For a Thai soup that doesn't use any hard-to-find ingredients, try this chicken potato soup that is super comforting and was a staple in my family in Thailand!
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- 4 cups chicken stock
- 350 g chicken thigh, 1-inch pieces
- 3 Tbsp fish sauce
- 2 heads shallots
- 3-4 dried chilies (or substitute fresh chilies)
- 2 stalks lemongrass, bottom half only, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
- 5-6 rounds galangal
- 5-6 kaffir lime leaves, torn
- 2 heads shallots, cut in half vertically
- 2 Tbsp tamarind juice
- 200 grams oyster, straw or beech mushrooms
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halves, or regular tomatoes, cut into wedges
- 2-3 Tbsp lime juice (how much you need depends on the acidity of your tamarind)
- ½-1 tsp sugar (you may or many not need this)
- Salt as needed
- ¼ cup cilantro
- 3-4 leaves sawtooth coriander (optional)
Bring 4 cups of stock to a boil in a medium pot.
While the stock is heating, place the dried chilies on a sheet pan and, without preheating, broil them on low in the oven on the top rack. When the chilies puff up and start to darken in colour, remove from heat and add them directly to the stock pot. If you want a spicier soup, break the chilies in half before adding.
Turn the broiler up to high and broil the shallots, cut side up, until the edges are charred, about 3-5 minutes. Add them to the stock pot.
Once the stock boils, add chicken, 2 Tbsp fish sauce, and simmer for 15 minutes until the chicken is fork tender. Once chicken is tender, add lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves and simmer for 3-5 minutes to infuse. Then add 2 Tbsp tamarind juice, sugar, mushrooms and tomatoes; bring the soup back to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in 2 Tbsp lime juice. Taste and adjust seasoning with the remaining lime juice, fish sauce and/or salt as needed.
Stir in cilantro and sawtooth coriander just before serving.