I've never really cooked Thai food before. I love to eat it and I respect those who are able to concoct it, but I always thought I was unable to create the spicy, sweet flavors on my own.
I was inspired by a recipe that called for five ingredients for Thai soup. I decided to try it out but to add my own flair to it as well. Turns out I can make something that tastes like Thai! Watch out, it's spicy!
It's worth noting that you could probably find these ingredients at a normal grocery store, but usually it's a lot cheaper and there's a lot more variety at an Asian market. I found all of my ingredients at the Red Apple Market in Mountain View and it probably cost about $7. I wish I was able to find bean sprouts, but my grocery store didn't have them. I would add that next time.
Thai Coconut Curry Soup
2 oz. of yellow curry paste (I chose a 4 oz. can that looked like it had Thai writing on it. It also had a photo of soup on it, so that's why I went with it).
One 13.5 oz. can of coconut cream (not milk or water)
1/3 package of rice noodles (again, I wasn't sure what to get so I looked at the photos on the packaging)
1 cup chicken stock
1.5 cups water
1 jalapeño, thinly sliced (optional if you want less spice)
1/2 brick of extra-firm tofu, cubed
1/2 cup or so of cooked shredded chicken
2 tbs. cooking oil
a couple of dashes of fish sauce (the magical Thai ingredient)
a couple of tablespoons of fresh cilantro
several sprigs of fresh basil
squeeze of fresh lime
Cook noodles according to packaging. I boiled mine for six minutes and then strained and ran under cold water for one minute and set aside till I was ready to add to soup.
Bring the 1.5 cups water and chicken stock to a boil. Set aside. In a large saucepan, heat the oil and add the curry. Stir and cook for 30 seconds or so. Add the coconut cream, the water and the stock and stir till the coconut cream is melted and soup starts to simmer. Add the noodles, fish sauce, tofu, chicken and jalapeños to the soup and return to a simmer. Turn off heat and serve into bowls. Top each bowl with cilantro and broken up pieces of basil. Squeeze a wedge of lime over it all.
This soup was quite filling. It made more than I expected, and I'm happy to have leftovers for tomorrow!