Tom Yum Goong, is, perhaps the King of South East Asian soups.
Known throughout the world, it features in nearly all Thai restaurant menus. (As it should).
Commercial “Pastes” are readily available, but in Laocook fashion, we like to make our own.
The Spicy, Sour and Herby flavours are the main characteristics of the dish. Fresh ingredients such as Lemon Grass, Kaffir Lime Leaf, Fish Sauce, Shallots, Tamarind and Chillies are added to a medium bodied stock (broth), at the very last moment, drops of freshly squeezed Lime Juice give the dish its palatable “Kick”.
It is a wonderful contrast of flavours.
We wanted to take it a step further, to make it a more “Summery” soup.
The longer days beg for cold soups, such as the Andalucian staple Gazpacho or Salmorejo. However, we found that the Tom Yum served cold, wouldn’t be clear as the flavourable particles would settle at the bottom of the dish (in our case, a Shot Glass), and we would end up with a “muddy-looking” soup.
We worked on this for a few weeks, and decided that we would have to clarify the soup, and separate the particles, without loosing the “Kick” that Tom Yum has.
After a few trials and errors, we found the best way to “clean” the soup was to let is slowly drip through a fine sieve and cotton mesh overnight.
The resulting soup was as clear as a Consommé, and still retained its flavours.
We set the soup with some Gelatine, to make a loose soft jelly. Blanched King Prawns (the Goong) we added later, as well as some chopped Asparagus, which would give the Amuse Bouche a crunchy texture.
So here we have it. Our New Style Tom Yum Goong. Especially made for Summer.
Served with a crispy Palomino wine, it is a refreshing way to start a meal. 🙂