The Perfect Tom Kha Gai

I love Thai food. I mean good Thai food. Because there’s no greater disappointment than waiting for the opportunity to
eat out in a Thai restaurant, imagine all the flavours in your head, lick your lips with anticipation and then receive a flavourless, loveless, sad little plate of something, that supposed to be an amazing Tom Kha Gai. How many times has that happened?

 

Then you go home, still craving for that spicy, coconut creamy, hot chicken goddess and search for the perfect Tom Kha Gai recipe…

 

Well, search no more!

 

After years of trials and errors, suffering trough numerous disappointing meals, I created my very own Tom Kha Gai recipe. I usually don’t glorify my own cooking, but this is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.!!

So, here we go, Tom Kha Gai a’la GDLV:

 

Start with the broth:
– 5-6 kaffir lime leaves
– 2 lemongrass sticks, cleaned and crushed slightly or 2 tablespoons of lemongrass paste. Lately, I went for the paste, it is so much easier.
– 4 tablespoons of lime juice. You can juice a lime then add the whole fruit to the broth.
– a thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled and crushed slightly
– 2-3 spring onions
– 1-2 tablespoons of fish or oyster sauce
– chilli pepper or red curry paste, use as much as you like, I love my food hot, so I use quite a bit
– 500 ml chicken stock

Simmer all ingredients for 15 minutes to allow the flavours to surface, then remove the chunky bits and add a can of thick, creamy coconut cream. There are various brands of coconut cream out there, I usually go for the ones with a thick layer of solid cream and just a little bit of water underneath.

 

Now let’s prepare the rest:
– a chicken breast, cleaned and diced
– 250 g mushrooms, if you can’t get Thai straw mushrooms, you can use shiitake, oyster, enoki, chestnut mushrooms or even white buttons will do.
– a small tin of sliced water chestnut

Fry the chicken on a tablespoon of rapeseed oil, add the mushrooms and the water chestnut. Stir for a couple of minutes then add the coconut broth and bring it to the boil.

 

Decorate with coriander/cilantro, add some chilli slices and serve piping hot.

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