Much like the early pioneers and tribal medicine-men, I’m of the opinion that just about any ailment can be cured with some good soup and frivolous dancing. Evan knows that if I’m not feeling well or I had a tough day at work or I’m in the throws of being a ‘lady’, his key responsibility as my friend and life partner is to stop by Lemongrass Thai for a vat of their Tofu Tom Kha. It’s creamy, coconuty, chunky, warm, silky, salty, and sweet – and quite possibly the unofficial nectar of the gods.
It’s no secret to my inner circle that I’m a fan of really any asian cuisine, and when my friend Evonne bought me The Asian Vegan Kitchen by Hema Parekh for my graduation last year, I literally squealed. Every person, not just vegan peeps, need to own this cookbook as it’s straight up stacked with cuisine from India, Japan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Korea. After last week’s rich fall flavas, we took a field trip to Thailand for this week’s Souper Sunday feast. Sweatpants and microbrew required.
Noodles in Spicy Coconut Soup
FOR THE SPICE PASTE
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
- 6 candlenuts or cashews
- 5 fresh red chilies (this makes for a 7/10 on the spice scale, so start with less)
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 3/4 inch cube galangal
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
FOR THE SOUP
- 3 tbsp peanut or vegetable oil
- 1 stalk lemongrass, halved and crushed
- 3 kaffir lime leaves
- 2 slices galangal
- 7 ounces deep fried tofu, sliced
- 2 cups coconut milk
- 1 cup water
- 2/3 tsp salt
- 1 medium tomato, cut into 8 wedges
- 11 ounces wheat flour noodles or thin spaghetti, cooked
FOR THE GARNISHES:
- 2 scallions, finely sliced
- 1/2 cucumber, sliced
- Celery leaves
- Bean sprouts
- Lettuce leaves, shredded
- Using a food processor, grind the spice paste ingredients together until smooth, using a little water if needed.
- For the soup, heat the oil in a saucepan and saute the ground spice, lemongrass, lime leaves, galangal, and tofu.
- Add the coconut milk, water, and salt. Bring to a boil and simmer over low heat for 6-8 minutes. Add the tomato to the simmering broth.
- Arrange the garnishes on the table. Immerse the noodles in boiling water for a few seconds. Drain and divide between individual bowls. Pour a ladleful of the hot coconut broth into each bowl. Invite your guests to add their favorite garnishes.
Check out these other delicious soup recipes from the EPL kitchen:
- Thai Green Curry with Tofu and Vegetables
- Calorie-free Cabbage Soup
- Vegan Goulash
- Yam & Black Bean Soup with Orange & Cilantro