- 6 cups chicken broth
- 3 6-inch pieces lemongrass, tough outer leaves removed, crushed
- 8 Kaffir lime leaves, crushed, or grated zest of 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons chile-tamarind paste
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup palm or light-brown sugar
- 1 pound medium shrimp, shelled
- 1/2 cup canned straw or oyster mushrooms, drained and cut in half lengthwise
- 2 fresh Thai chiles, thinly sliced
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 6 large sprigs fresh cilantro
- Crush the lemongrass and lime leaves to release their potent and flavorful oils.
- In a large saucepan, combine the chicken stock, lemongrass and lime leaves (or zest if you’re using). Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat and boil for 15 minutes to infuse the stock with flavor. Using a slotted spoon or mesh strainer, remove the large pieces of lemongrass and the lime leaves and discard.
- To the soup, add the chile-tamarind paste, lime juice, fish sauce, and sugar. Simmer for 1 minute.
- Add the shrimp, mushrooms, shallots, and chiles and return the soup to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the shrimp is cooked through, about 2 minutes. Serve hot with the cilantro sprigs floating on the top of the soup.