Thai Ginger Coconut Soup (aka "Tom Kha Gai")

A highly aromatic & spicy soup. Warning: It's extremely addictive! It's also great if you're suffering from any kind of respiratory distress (cold, flu, hay fever, sore throat, etc.).


  • 2-3 cups chicken stock
  • 2-3 cans coconut milk
  • 1 bunch cilantro Roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp Thai chili peppers (or jalapeno) Thinly sliced
  • 1-2 dashes dried chili peppers (or red pepper flakes)
  • 4-5 limes Juiced
  • 2-3 tbsp fish sauce To taste
  • 1 red onion Chopped (not too small)
  • 2-3 scallions Sliced, with green stems (not too small)
  • 2 garlic cloves Sliced
  • 1 small red bell pepper Sliced
  • 1 small green bell pepper Sliced
  • 1 small yellow bell pepper Sliced
  • fresh ginger To taste. I tend to use a LOT. Grated
  • 2 tbsp red chili paste
  • 1 tsp Thai curry paste
  • 1 bunch fresh basic
  • 2 lbs. shrimp Cleaned & deveined


  • 2 stalks lemon grass, bruised For flavor. Do not eat.
  • 4-5 kaffir lime leaves Shredded


  1. Heat a small amount of oil in saucepan, saute chili peppers, bell peppers, red onion & garlic until aromatic.

  2. In a large soup pot, bring the stock to a boil.

  3. Add coconut milk, red curry & chili paste, plus the fish sauce & lime juice, & whisk.

  4. Then add the sauteed ingredients, & taste for balance.

  5. Add the remaining ingredients, & bring back to a boil before adding shrimp.

  6. After a few minutes (long enough for shrimp to turn pink) taste for the balance of spices again, adjust if needed.

  7.  Just before serving add basil, cilantro & scallions.

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