Soups are an integral part of a Thai meal, unlike the western approach of an individual course, a soup is but one of a number of dishes served together and to be enjoyed by many.It is designed to restore the palate between dishes offering a respite from intense chilli heat.
A bowl of soup served with rice can make a great meal for one.
A favourite of mine is Chicken and Pandanus Broth, with Shitake mushrooms, Baby corn, coconut and Thai basil.This soup is rich and perfumed with nuttiness from Pandanus and aniseed from Thai basil
2.5 litre chicken stock
3 fresh pandanus leaves (available most Asian grocery shops)
75ml soy sauce
40g oyster sauce
25g palm sugar
250g diced chicken thigh
20 baby corn cobs
6 Tbls/ 80g grated fresh coconut
20g/ 8 Thai basil sprigs
8 shitake mushrooms
Roughly chop the pandanus leaf and add to chicken stock.
Bring stock to boil, turn off heat and leave to infuse for at least one hour. The more time the pandanus is left in the stock, the more intense the flavour.
Strain stock into a new pot, adding, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and palm sugar and bring to the boil.
When soup is boiling, add diced chicken, coconut, baby corn and shitake mushrooms
Simmer for 3 minutes; add Thai basil and ladle into bowls immediately.
Serve with sticky rice.