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Friday, January 28, 2011

Thai Chicken and Coconut Soup (Tom Kha Gai)

I love Thai food. But in Damascus, good Thai, let alone Asian food, is hard to come by. However, with the arrival of a few new modern supermarkets, we are now able to find ethnic food ingredients that are not available in the local market. Oyster sauce, hoisin, sweet chili, and coconut milk are now readily available to satisfy any craving that a restaurant in Damascus simply cannot.

In this case, I craved the creamy, spicy broth of Thai Tom Kha Gai. However, I didn’t add the oyster mushrooms since mushrooms are one of the few things my husband doesn’t eat. Something about getting sick as a kid on mushrooms or something like that. I personally think if he didn’t know they were there, he would eat them and all would be fine.

Anyway, I left the mushrooms in the recipe so you can make it as is..... unless of course, your company doesn't like mushrooms as well!

Thai Chicken and Coconut Soup
(Tom Kha Gai)
Serves 2 generously as a meal

1 can (14 oz) Coconut Milk
2 cups Chicken Broth
6 slices Fresh Ginger (about 1/2 cm thick each)
1 stick Fresh Lemongrass (cut into 1 inch pieces) or 2 tbsp Chopped Lemongrass
400 grams Skinless, Boneless Chicken Breast or Thigh, cut into bite sized slices
1 cup Oyster Mushrooms, cut into pieces
1 tbsp Fresh Lime Juice
1 tbsp Fish Sauce
1 tsp Sugar
11/2 tsp Dried Red Chili Flakes (for medium spicy soup)
Fresh Cilantro Leaves for garnish

In a saucepan over high heat, combine coconut milk, chicken broth, ginger and lemongrass and bring to a boil. Then reduce to a simmer.

Add the chicken, oyster mushrooms, lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, and chili flakes. Simmer for about 5 minutes, until chicken is just cooked. Ladle into serving dishes and garnish with fresh cilantro.


  1. Love this dish...never tried it on my own, so thanks for sharing the secret!

  2. I post a recipe Tom Kha Gai a while back, I actually had khaffir leaves available in MTL. It is a very delicious soup.

  3. Yum, looks delicious! By the way, love the change to the white background - much more modern and easy to read :-)