Many people think that Tom Yum, or Thai spicy and sour shrimp soup is too intimidating or hard to attempt at home. In reality, it’s about the easiest Thai recipe to prepare, provided you have the ingredients. To make Thai cooking at home, you ought to stock up the essentials, especially: nam prik phao (Thai roasted chili paste), fish sauce, palm sugar, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaf, and lime juice. As I am a huge fan of Thai food, they are always in my pantry or fridge. If you don’t have these ingredients, I strongly urge you to stock them up as you can make endless Thai dishes with these staples.
One pointer about making quick lunches is to multitask. I always do 2 or 3 things at the same time. I will boil the noodles while prepping the ingredients. And while I wait for my soup to cook, the noodles would be done. Try this recipe and practice multitasking in the kitchen and a good and delicious weekday lunch is 15 minutes away.
Tom Yum Noodle Soup Recipe
1 roll packaged soba noodles/egg noodles (or instant noodles)
1 1/4 cups water
1 stalk lemongrass, white part only, pounded and bruised
5-6 kaffir lime leaves, bruised
4-5 slices fresh galangal
1/2 small tomato, cut into 3 to 4 wedges
6 medium-sized shrimp, shelled and deveined
6 canned straw mushrooms or fresh oyster mushrooms, cut into halves
1 1/2 tablespoons Nam Prik Pao (Thai roasted chili paste)
1/2 tablespoon fish sauce or to taste
3 dashes chili powder
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
Cilantro leaves, for garnishing
Prepare the soba/egg noodles according to package instructions. Usually it takes about 5 minutes or so to cook the soba noodles. Drain the noodles, rinse with cold water and set aside in a serving bowl.
At the same time, bring the 1 1/4 cups water to boil in another small pot. Add in all the aromatics, follow by the shrimp, mushrooms, and nam prik phao. Keep boiling until the shrimp is cooked through. Add the fish sauce and chili powder. Turn off the heat, add in the lime juice. Stir to combine well.
Pour the Tom Yum soup over the noodles and topped with some cilantro leaves. Serve immediately.