Vegetarian Tom Yum Soup

  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 stalk lemongrass
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves
  • 1” piece of galangal or ginger, sliced
  • ¼ lb soft or medium-firm tofu, cubed
  • 1-2 red chilies, de-seeded and thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 6 fresh shitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 green or red pepper, chopped
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 can coconut milk, regular or light
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
  • 2 TB vegetarian fish sauce or wheat-free soy sauce
  • 1 lime, cut into small wedges

The kaffir lime leaves are essential to get the authentic taste of Thai cooking. Use fresh, if available!

Trim the lemongrass stalk by removing the outer hard, dried skin, cut off the bottom ½” of core and discard. Cut the smooth stem in half lengthwise and roughly chop into smaller pieces.  Bruise the lemongrass pieces by pounding briefly in a mortar and pestle or mashing with the side of a large knife.  Place lemongrass in a square of cheesecloth and tie top together securely with cooking twine. Prepare broth in a large soup pot.  Add the lemongrass bundle to the broth along with the galangal or ginger, garlic, chilies, and lime leaves. Bring to a boil and lower heat to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes, until fragrant.  Add tofu, mushrooms and bell peppers.  Cook 5-8 minutes until mushrooms are soft.  Lower heat and add coconut milk and cherry tomatoes, plus the fish sauce or soy sauce.  Taste for salt and spiciness, adding more fish/soy sauce and red chilies as needed.  Remove and discard the lemongrass bundle and kaffir lime leaves. Garnish with fresh cilantro and a wedge of lime.