Tom Yum Recipe with Shrimp, Tom Yum Kung!
Tom yum is a delicious hot and sour soup from Thailand. “Tom” means boiling “Yum” means mixed and “Kung” means shrimp. The protein can be anything you want like chicken, beef, pork, tofu, or just vegetables only. It is one dish that easily turns into plant-based.
Tom yum always reminds me of Kimchi Jjigae, my comfort food from Korea. It is tangy, spicy, umami and so many flavors and textures in one bowl.
You can enjoy this soup as it is or add some cooked noodles to make tom yum noodles or serve with rice. So delicious!!
It is surprisingly easy and quick to make so let’s get started!
Let’s prepare aromatic ingredients first, this is pretty much where all the flavors coming from. Nowadays you can find easily a lot of these authentic ingredients from regular/gourmet grocery stores so definitely check them out!
3 shallots, small diced
2 oz galangal, sliced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
3 lemongrass, cut into 3” long and smashed
3 to 4 kaffir lime leaves
Smash 3 to 6 Thai chilies in a mortar & pestle. You can just chop them too, if you don’t want to use mortar & pestle, I like to do it this way so the natural chili oil releases. Adjust the chili amount to your taste though, what is shown in the pictures above is quite a bit.
You will also need 8 to 10 oz of mushrooms. I used shimeji & oyster mushrooms but you can use any mushrooms you have or you can find. I love these mushrooms’ textures in soup. Some of the big ones I just teared up to smaller size.
You can use any shrimp, I prepared 2 different kinds of shrimp to just show you guys. You will need a total of 1 lb of whole shrimp or peeled & deveined shrimp.
What you see in the picture above are whole shrimp you can easily find at Asian or seafood groceries and blue river prawns.
If you’re using whole river prawns or whole large tiger shrimp, go ahead and cut open the middle back of the shell of each prawn and the middle of the head with sharp scissors. Devein the prawn and remove legs/antennas.
If you’re using large size whole shrimp, remove the heads, remove the legs and shells (remove tails if you prefer) and remove the vein. Keep the head to use it later in the soup.
You can skip this part if you’re using already peeled & deviled shrimp.
Combine 3 cups water, 3 cups chicken stock in a large pot.
I’m using my carbon steel wok. I love all-purpose types of cooking tools and this wok is perfect for stir-fry, steam, soup, and more!
Add all of the aromatic vegetables – shallot, galangal, garlic, lemongrass, & lime leaves and bring it to boil over high heat.
When it’s boiling, stir in 4 tbsp fish sauce (Use aminos and some salt if you want to make it vegetarian) and 4 tbsp Thai chili paste to season.
I mixed 2 different kinds of chili paste for mine. One has shrimp, garlic, and other ingredients that make it super flavorful and the other one has lots of chili flakes that make it super spicy. Both can be easily found at local Asian grocery stores.
Mix chili paste into soup well and you will see the color change immediately. Time to squeeze shrimp heads into the pot if you are using. Add mushrooms as well and bring back to boil.
Add prepared prawn/shrimp into boiling soup. Cook shrimp until 3/4way cooked. Cooking time depends on the size of shrimp you’re using & depends on if the skin is on or off. Small to medium, 1 to 2 minutes. Large to jumbo 3 to 4 minutes. Head-on prawns with shell 5 to 7 minutes.
Now, reduce heat to low and squeeze 4 to 5 limes into the pot. Add 3 limes first, then adjust to your taste. Remove from heat, add 1/2 cup of evaporated milk if you want a creamier taste. Add chopped cilantro & don’t forget to add the chili! I almost did. 😂
Stir well and serve in a bowl, garnish with some cilantro and shredded lime leaves if you’d like. Serve with a lime wedge and extra chili oil.
- 3 cups water
- 3 cups chicken stock
- 3 shallots, small diced
- 2 oz galangal, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 3 lemongrass, cut into 3” long and smashed
- 3 to 4 kaffir lime leaves
- 4 tbsp fish sauce
- 4 tbsp Thai chili paste (adjust to your taste)
- 8 to 10 oz mushrooms (I used shimeji & oyster mushrooms but you can use any mushrooms you have)
- 1 lb whole prawn or U13-15 shrimp, head removed & deveined (you can peel if you prefer)
- 3 to 6 Thai chilies, smashed
- 2 tomatoes, diced, optional
- 4 to 5 limes
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk, optional
- Handful cilantro, chopped
- Combine water, chicken stock in a large pot. Add shallot, galangal, garlic, lemongrass, & lime leaves and bring it to boil over high heat.
- When it’s boiling, stir in fish sauce and Thai chili paste to season. Squeeze shrimp heads into pot if you are using. Add mushrooms as well.
- Bring back to boil and add prepared shrimp. Cook shrimp until 3/4way cooked (cooking time depends on size of shrimp you’re using & depends on if skin is on or off. Small to medium, 1 to 2 minutes. Large to jumbo 2 to 4 minutes. Head-on prawns 5 minutes.)
- Now, reduce heat to low and squeeze all of lime into pot. Add 3 limes first, then adjust to your taste. Remove from heat, add evaporated milk if you are using and chopped cilantro. Stir well and serve in a bowl, garnish with some cilantro and shredded lime leaves if you’d like. Serve with lime wedge and extra chili oil and enjoy!
- Cook Time: 18 minutes