Tom Yum(ish) Soup


Hooray, hooray – the holidays are here.  And good grief, do I need them!  It’s been a tough term and I am utterly pooped.

Lots of fun stuff is taking place over the next two weeks, including a family holiday, car hunting and a special celebration. D is slightly worried that I am going to tear through this vacation in my usual whirlwind fashion and go back to school as exhausted as I finished it.  Being notorious for trying to fit as much is humanly possible into unreasonably small periods of time, I know this not an unfounded concern and, thus, I am making a conscious effort to relax and take care of myself over the coming days.

One way to do this, of course, is to eat well.  The following Thai soup has recently become a firm favourite of mine and it always strikes me as being particularly nourishing.    As with any good tom yum, the flavour is amazingly fresh.  Unlike your average tom yum, I have added extra vegetables in the form of mangetout and spinach.  Not very authentic but it works fantastically well.  🙂

Tom Yum(ish) Soup

(serves one)

500ml chicken or vegetable stock

1 whole red chilli, pricked with a fork a few times

2 lime leaves

1 stem of lemongrass, outer leaves removed and chopped

1 tbspn fresh ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

Handful of mangetout

6 tiger prawns

Handful of spinach or pak choi

1tblspn thai fish sauce

1 tblspn sugar

1/2 lime, juiced

2 spring onions, chopped

Palmful of fresh coriander

Red chilli, sliced (optional)

  • Add the first 6 ingredients to a pan and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Add the mangetout and prawns to the pan, simmer for another 2 minutes before adding the spinach.
  • Once the spinach has wilted (should take seconds) take the pan off the heat. 
  • Remove the whole chilli and lime leaves. 
  • Add the fish sauce, sugar and lime juice.  Stir and pour into a bowl.
  • Serve topped with the spring onion, coriander and chilli.

P.S. This is my entry to the two year anniversary of the Weekend Herb Blogging event.  Congratualtions Kalyn!!!

29 thoughts on “Tom Yum(ish) Soup

  1. Yum – I always make this sort of soup when I feel in need of a bit of a boost too! It’s great for using things up as well; virtually any veg works, as well as the odds and ends of meat/fish/tofu etc I always have in the freezer. I think the only thing I do differently is to put in a few noodles.

    I hope you feel refreshed by the end of the holiday Wendy!

  2. Gorgeous photos! I haven’t made this soup in years, but it’s so fantastic! You’ve inspired me to start up again – I always feel so unbelievably healthy when I eat it. It’s fabulous for hangovers, by the by ; )
    Have a great holiday.

  3. Enjoy your holiday, Wendy!

    Love the soup! I made sth similar a few months ago, trying to recreate sth I had in a Thai restaurant, and loved it! I will make your version, too!

  4. I have never heard of the soup but I could sure use some with this cold I have! Fresh broth soups are so comforting and they hit the spot. What is mangetout ?
    Have a great holiday break! You can rest when you go back to work! Photo is beautiful!

  5. I don’t make Thai food nearly often enough and your soup has inspired me. I just happen to have some spinach in my fridge… Enjoy your holiday!

  6. Sophie – I love noodley soups and make an asian chicken noodle soup quite often (tonight, in fact!) but I’m not keen on them in tom yums for some reason.

    KatieZ – Thank you!

    Anh – It’s a soup I get real cravings for frequently. 🙂

    Pat – Thank you!

    Amanda – Thanks! I was very happy with this photo. It’s really caught the dish well.

    Maninas – Let me know how it goes!

    Maryann – It has an odd hot and sour taste. Imagine people either love it or hate it! Mangetout is what North Americans call snowpeas. 🙂

    Deb – Yours and Maryann’s comment led me to some investigating and as I mentioned to her (above) mangetout is the British word for snowpeas. 🙂

    Rosa – It’s one of my favourite cuisines. So many big flavours. 🙂

  7. Yay for holidays! Mine are still a month away so I’m very envious.

    I love the zesty aromatic hit of tom yum. Yours looks just fabulous. I love the photo too!

  8. Kelly – Probably because they are cooked so very briefly. It’s a very fresh soup.

    Meg – Oh, I haven’t tried it with tofu. That’ll be my next bowl!

    Truffle – Thank you! I was rather proud of the photo. I’ll be envious of you next month!

    Annemarie – Thank you! I’m loving the break already. 🙂

  9. Ohhhhhhh Wendy that soup was really delicious!!!!!!!! I made it for lunch today for Hubby and myself. That is a definate having again and again recipe!!!!! Thanks for posting it.

  10. You couldn’t be more right, Wendy! There is just something about Tom Yum – you just feel so healthy and restored after eating it. Very good stuff.

    I can also relate to your vacation as a way to get more “stuff” done. I am the same way. I get too responsible sometimes and Roberto always tries to get me to realx.

    I hope you have a wonderful vacation! (and a restful one too)!

  11. Well I had no idea that there was another name for snow peas, so I’ve definitely learned something. I love all the varieties of Thai Soup, and I think adding a bit of spinach is a brilliant idea. Sounds wonderful. Thanks for helping celebrate the two year anniversary of WHB!

  12. I love this soup although it has got me in to trouble. I made some for my in-laws and got a bit carried away with the chilli. From then on in whenever they have something hot it is compared to the heat of that ty soup. Even people who weren’t there talk about it… Great!

  13. I had just recently had, for the first time, Tom Yum soup and a wonderful Thai place here in Chicago and had been told that if I liked spicy I should order it “Thai hot”. Well, we (me & hubby) did and holy cats!!! We were sweating and our noses were running and I have to admit…we loved it! If anything is ailing you this will chase it away and send it far far away. Am looking forward to trying your recipe at home but think I will make it a little less incendiary than the restaurants version. Thank you for the recipe.

  14. Nilmandra – Thank you!

    Danielle – You can make this version as hot as you like. I prefer just a gentle heat. 🙂 You’re right though – this soup cures most ills!

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