Friday, December 12, 2008

Thai Soup Re-Imagined

Tonight is all about hot food against the cold weather. One favorite co-diner used to eat this "garbage meal" that mixed up lots of crazy things and was so tasty and so much my kind of food that I couldn't believe another human was into that kind of meal. (I have been ridiculed by many friends and exes for my strange bedfellows of foods on the plate.) So tonight's dinner payed homage to the garbage-meal of old as I made broccoli & scrambled eggs with salsa, some gimme lean sausage, and Chinese broccoli stir fried with soy sauce and chives. But tomorrow bears the weighty responsibility of using the indulgence of veggies purchased at the Asian market far away (so figure in a few bucks for the eight miles out).
Sour and Spicy Prawn* Soup Recipe
(Tom Yam Kung)
6 large spiny-clawed prawns (Obviously out for the vegetarians, but there are great tofu options, and wood mushrooms reconstituted give a great chewy-ness.)
1 lemon grass steam, cut into short lengths
2-3 kaffir lime leaves, torn into pieces
5-6 crushed hot chilies
3 tbsp lime juice
1-2 tbsp fish sauce (veggie version)
Additionally, I've splurged (Asian mart, again) on some spicy Thai basil and have had this soup with a heavy dose of that, so will likely include it, as well.
3 cups soup stock (vegetable broth with more lime juice and a dash of some hot sauce and perhaps the chives purchased from the Asian market) Veggie broth takes some doctoring to get that kind of buttery/nutty taste of the more meaty broths. But it's workable.

Talk me out of water chestnuts. As with jicama, I go through phases where I believe that everything is improved by them. This recipe is buckling from my changes. But have faith, I make a killer West African Peanut Stew which is not only vegetarianized but low-fat (fat free would have been a crime to that one).
*Note to the purists. I am taking away and substituting much here, I recognize but for Veace and those of us trying to get some of our favorites to work again within dietary limitations, it's worth a shot. I'll let you know as I zero in on the flavor I'm craving (minus little souls swimming in the broth)how it all works.

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