Tom Ka Gai is one of my favorite soups on the planet, I could literally eat it everyday for the rest of my life, and lick the bowl clean every single time. Yes, it’s that good! Tom Ka Gai is a Thai Chicken Coconut hot and sour soup with coconut milk originating in Thai cuisine. I remember the first time I had it in a Thai restaurant and thinking to myself, I couldn’t believe I had lived this long and not tasted it’s deliciousness. Fast forward five years I have finally learned how to make it, and have since made it three times in the past two weeks. This recipe has been roommate, friend, and boyfriend approved, so get ready for some seriously amazing soup in your future, if you choose to make this soup. You may even find people stealing spoonfuls from your bowl, when you’re not looking – yes, this has happened..!
As I sit here, eating my second bowl of the evening and third batch in the past two weeks, I find I could almost write odes of poetry to it’s deliciousness. In fact last weekend, when I was grocery shopping for the ingredients, I was so excited to make my Tom Ka Gai soup, that I was doing a slight happy dance throughout the supermarket. My checker even commented on it to me as I was checking out.
Checker: “Ohhh, I know you!”
Me: “Oh really, from where?”
Checker: “You’re the girl who was dancing in the produce section a little bit ago”
Me, completely unabashed: “I’m just really excited to make dinner tonight!”
Checker: “I can tell! You don’t see people exuding so much excitement here that often.”
Anyhow I digress, this soup can be made as starter or as I like to do, eat a giant bowl for a full meal!
- 1 can (14 oz.) coconut milk
- 1 can (14 oz.) reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 6 quarter-size slices fresh ginger
- 1 stalk fresh lemongrass, cut in 1-in. pieces
- 1 pound boned, skinned chicken breast or thighs, cut into 1-in. chunks
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon Thai or Vietnamese fish sauce (nuoc mam or nam pla)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon Thai chili paste
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
- In a medium saucepan, combine coconut milk, broth, ginger, and lemongrass and bring to boil over high heat.
- Add chicken, mushrooms, lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, and chili paste.
- Reduce heat and simmer until chicken is firm and opaque, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Discard lemongrass.
- Garnish servings with basil and cilantro.
(Don’t be embarrassed to lick the bowl clean. I’m doing it right now)