SERVES 8 (APPETIZER PORTIONS)
Total cooking and prep time 15-20 minutes
8 cups water
8 Shrimp peeled and deveined (save shells)
10 each shitake mushrooms (sliced)
2-3 lemon grass stalks (tied in knot)*
6 each kaffir lime Leaves*
4 tablespoons fish Sauce*
10 sprigs cilantro
4 chili peppers*
2 tablespoons nam prig pow* (chili bean paste with soy oil) split in 8 bowls
* These ingredients can be found at any Asian market. Four Seasons grows on the premises!
Read the Notes below and add whatever garnishes you would like to the list of ingredients.
Bring water to boil. Add lemon grass, shrimp shells and simmer 5 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients. Simmer 2 minutes and then remove shrimp. Simmer another 3-4 minutes until flavors have developed.
Adjust seasonings and flavor with lime juice and fish sauce. At this point you can serve or cool down and reheat later. (Remove shrimp shells and stems if desired)
When ready to serve, put shrimp in bowl . Then add hot broth and garnish with cilantro.
Chef Jim says there are a number of ways to serve Tom Yum Soup. If you like rustic, leave everything in and just eat around the stems. For a more elegant presentation, strain the whole soup. Then have all the garnishes in warm bowls ready to go. At service, pour the broth on top of the shrimp (chopped and split perhaps), some diced tomato, fresh sliced thin shiitake mushrooms, scallions and finally the cilantro leaves. You can add some long, thinly sliced basil (chiffonade the basil) and even a few drops of scallion oil to be sexy.
-The Gourmet Review