Tom Yum is a soup that I frequently order at one of my local Thai restaurants. But I decided to make it myself since I had several Lemongrass stalks laying in the bottom of my vegetable drawer that needed to be used. This is actually a pretty simple soup and it's fast to make as long as you have Lemongrass on hand along with a little bottle of Thai Red Chili Paste (I use the Thai Kitchen brand) and some fresh Galangal or Ginger and a Lime. I like to add in some sliced Shallots or Red Onion, some sliced Chicken Breast and some Tomato. It's supposed to be a thin, somewhat clear broth with just a hint of red color, but I added the Tomatoes in early with the Lemongrass so that they melted into the soup and I liked it even better! I served it with some Jasmine Rice and it was the perfect dinner!
Tomato Tom Yum Soup
8 cups Chicken Broth (I used Swanson's Natural Goodness)
3 Lemongrass Stalks
2 - 3 large slices of peeled Ginger or Galangal
1 Roma Tomato
1/3 cup sliced Shallots or Red Onion
1 - 2 Tablespoons Thai Red Chili Paste
1 Chicken Breast half, cut into thin slices
8 Button Mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup fresh squeezed Lime Juice
1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
Cut the bottom 1/2 inch off the Lemon Grass and then peel off the outer layer. Cut off the top, leaving about 3 inches. Cut that into 1/2 pieces and smash them lightly with the bottom of a mug.
Pour the Chicken Broth into a pot and add the Lemon Grass, Shallots and Ginger. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer. Place the Tomato onto a ladle and drop into the hot broth for 30 seconds. Remove, trim the stem end, peel and chop. Add the chopped Tomato back to the broth along with the Thai Red Chili Paste. Simmer the broth for 15 minutes. Then add in the Chicken slices and Mushrooms and cook until the Chicken is opaque. Add in the Lime Juice and Sugar and stir throughly. Serve with Jasmine Rice.
Five Element Analysis
Chicken and Chicken Broth belong to the Wood Element and the Lemongrass and Lime add even more. The Tomato and the Red Chili paste contribute the Fire Element. The Mushrooms, Ginger and Sugar bring in the Earth Element and the Shallots make sure that the Metal Element is present too and the Rice is Metallic too. And, because this is a broth based soup, the Water Element is also represented. This then becomes a pretty balanced soup!