This week I am making a Tom Kha Gai recipe. Tom Kha Gai chicken soup! Thai coconut chicken soup. Thai penicillin for the common cold or flu! This is a delicious and velvety change of pace from regular old fashioned chicken soup for the soul! There are many flavors and textures in this Tom Kha Gai chicken soup recipe! So if you have had Tom Kha Gai before or not this is a great soup for the winter. I am making it as a main course but in many places it is served as a starter. I hope you make this delicious Tom Kha Gai recipe at home soon I know you will love it. You can find the exact recipe for this Tom Kha Gai on my blog @

Chicken Broth Recipe
1 large stock pot.
1 3 or 4 pound chicken.
1 Small to medium onion sliced.
1 Cup mixed vegetables.
3-4 Garlic cloves smashed.
12 Black peppercorns.
1 Tsp. Chinese five spice or 1 or 2 whole allspice.
1/2 Gallon of fresh water.
Tom Kha Gai Recipe
The 1/2 gallon of homemade chicken broth/stock you made earlier.
The chicken meat you separated earlier.
3 Tbsp. finely chopped lemongrass or some 1/4 inch sliced/bruised pieces of whole lemongrass.
3-4 Fresh Kaffir lime leaves.
1-2 Cups straw mushrooms.
You can use shitake mushrooms as well.
1 to 1 1/2 inch piece of fresh galangal finely sliced or minced. If you don’ have galangal use ginger.
3+ red chilies either smashed or cut lengthwise without stem.
Remove seeds from chilies to reduce heat. If you like heat leave the stems and ribs.
1 Can whole coconut milk.
2+ Tbsp. fresh lime juice.
2-3 Tbsp. Good quality fish sauce.
A handful of coriander/cilantro leaves whole or chopped up. No stems.
A handful of fresh basil leaves whole or chopped. No stems.
Some slivered scallions both white and green parts.
Some slivered shallots.
4 Pieces of chive buds if you can get them. Delicious!
OPTIONAL: If serving soup as a main course cook some basmati rice/jasmine rice or rice noodles and have them set aside to place in bowl first before adding soup to bowls.
OPTIONAL: Palm or brown sugar in the soup. Not traditional but a popular option these days.
OPTIONAL: Some Nam Prig Pad. Not traditional but a popular option.
OPTIONAL: Sesame or chili oil. Not traditional but a popular option.
OPTIONAL: Other veggies like gai choy. bok choy, bean sprouts, snow peas or any other veggie that you would find in a Thai dish.


Chicken Broth Cooking Method
Place all ingredients into your stock pot.
Add water.
Bring to a boil.
Reduce to a simmer.
Simmer for 2 to 34 hours.
Skim foam as needed during cooking.
Once chicken is done remove from stock pot and set aside.
Allow the chicken to cook for awhile then remove the meat from the bones.
Set bones aside.
Strain broth to get veggies out into another pot.
Put chicken carcass back into broth and simmer for another hour on medium simmer.
Add water if necessary to maintain 1/2 gallon of water for the soup dish.
Once you have a nice rich broth/stock make soup according the recipe directions.
Method For Tom Kha Gai Soup
If using fresh lemongrass bruise it up a bit with the back of your knife.
Make some slices of lemongrass about 1/4 inch thick make about 10-15 slices.
If using the chopped lemongrass have 3 Tbsp. on hand.
Have your stock potready.
Bring your chicken broth/stock back to a medium/high boil.
Add your chicken meat and straw mushrooms to the soup.
Add your lemongrass, kaffir lime leave and red or green chilies to the soup now.
Boil this mixture for 5 to 8 minutes.
Now turn heat down to medium.
Add your galangal or ginger now to the soup.
Add your cocounut milk to the soup stir in well.
Add your fish sauce and any extra veggies you are going to use in this soup.
Stir well and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
Turn heat down now and add your lime juice and stir in well.
Now it’s time to taste and make any adjustments to the soup that you want.
We are going for a balance of spicy, salty and sour.
If needed add more of any ingredient you need to achieve this balance of flavors.
Once you have achieved the flavor balance you desire it’s time to serve your soup!
Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with cilantro, basil, chives, shallots and more sliced chilies if desired.