Sunday, February 24, 2013

Tom Ka Soup II

To celebrate 100,000 hits on my first Tom Ka soup post, I thought I would do a sequel.

This Tom Ka recipe is vegan but don't be scared!  It's just as delicious as the first version.

I didn't attempt to replace the flavor of the fish sauce with something else--it's just not possible--I've totally reworked the recipe.  I think it still has a very "Thai" flavor profile and is every bit as delicious.  

Tom Ka Vegan

                                   1 carton vegetable stock (4 cups)
                                   1 14 oz. can coconut milk
                                   1 stalk lemongrass
                                   1 4-inch piece fresh ginger
                                   1 bunch cilantro
                                   1/2 large yellow onion
                                   1 lime, juiced
                                   1 tablespoon sriracha or red curry paste (+/- to taste)

Use any combination of your favorite chopped vegetables including:

Pea pods, sweet peppers, mushrooms, zucchini, yellow squash, bean sprouts, cherry tomatoes,
broccoli, carrots, sliced onions, scallions, baby corn, cilantro, basil, fresh ginger, etc.

For more substance you could also add tofu or rice vermicelli. 

I used the lemon grass and ginger...

...the stems of a cilantro bunch and one half an onion to flavor the
vegetable broth as the base for the soup.  I've made this three time using three different vegetable stocks and they're all a little different.  The best version was the Pacific vegetable stock that was heavy on the carrots which made it sweeter.

Peel and slice the ginger, chop the lemon grass, onions, cilantro stems and simmer them in the vegetable stock for about 30 minutes.  Turn off heat and let cool before straining the broth.

When you're ready to serve the soup, return the broth to the pot, heat to a simmer and add coconut milk, sriracha (or chili paste) and lime juice.

While the broth is heating, chop up your vegetables and add them to serving bowls.  Here I've used pea pods, button and oyster mushrooms, sweet yellow papers, baby corn and julienned ginger.  I would guess it's about 1-1/2  cups of vegetables.

This amount of broth will make four good sized bowls of soup (using a little more than one cup of broth per serving).  

To garnish, I mixed some sriracha with some toasted sesame oil and drizzled the red oil on top of the soup and topped with some micro basil.

The broth is really aromatic and feels very restorative.  The spice from the sriracha feels great on the throat if you're feeling a little under the weather.

I hope you enjoy!


  1. This is my most favorite soup...ever!!! I cannot go to a Thai restaurant without ordering it. I always get it with tofu and pour it over a little steamed rice. I can't wait to try your version. I pinned it last time but I'll pin this time too.

  2. Looks utterly divine Steve and I shall be making this soon. Sadly, I am just thinking about all the vegetables that had to die in the process.

    xo Terri

  3. Looks wonderful! Will definitely try. The sliced ginger looks like little startled fish, but I know it's vegetarian and ginger. Just my mind playing around...Hope you're feeling better and the snow doesn't have you plowed in. (Although this looks like a good use of down time)

  4. Mr Tom Ka II:

    Oh YUM! The ginger...slurp! Looks gawjus.


  5. We made your first version of this soup and really enjoyed it. Can't wait to try this recipe!

  6. I have to try this Steve. We love soup at my house and this one is so appealing to the eyes and I imagine to the taste buds as well. Gorgeous photos too!

  7. Yum yum! and you take the best darned food photos, I swear!

  8. It looks to good! Ah, the elusive lemon grass...

  9. This is just beautiful.
    Visually, every photo has me entranced.
    I wish someone would make me this lovely vegan soup.

  10. Oh, yes, this looks like a wondrous soup! Our family enjoys healthy eating and power foods-looks like this could be one of those recipes!

  11. Yum! I am looking for something new. I am on a very restrictive diet and it has gotten so tiresome that I have been sneaking outlawed foods just to eat something different. I can't wait to try this.

  12. That looks soooo good. I still need to try the first one.

  13. I tried your first recipe with chicken and loved it so I'm definitely going to try this recipe but with chicken. Sorry but I need the protien.

    Enjoy your week Steve!

  14. This looks just as good as your original version....restorative, I like that.

  15. Here you are. I knew you were up to something delicious/clever/new/fabulous.

    Something "Steve".

    xo jane

  16. Holy crap that looks almost too good to eat...beautiful!

    Congrats on that huge milestone. So fantastic :)

  17. Oh my gosh, this looks delish! Going to try it out this week - and so glad it's vegan - for once I don't have to change a recipe! xoxo- Cris

  18. YUM!!! Steve, that looks incredible! Full of textures and flavors. Since I love tofu, I'd add some. You are such an awesome cook. And with such an international repertoire!! Loi
    PS - Great pottery bowl, too.

  19. This looks divine! And your images are truly pinnable!

  20. Oh man I wish I could have seen this before right now so I could go buy the ingredients. It looks positively delicious and perfect for a snow day!

  21. I am vegan and cannot wait to try this... it sounds delicious!!

  22. I'm still making your original recipe but I'm always open to new things, so who knows? I'll deinitely pass this recipe on to my vegan-who-loves-to-cook daughterm though!

  23. THIS IS are youre own Pho. gotta try it. I am been a soup monger this winter.
    xo Nancy

  24. Well it certainly is a beautiful soup!! Your photography is magazine worthy. I hope you are feeling better and didn't get on your roof to shovel too soon after the flu. Hugs! Dianne

  25. steve here's the deal. when you have a new post you're gonna have to come over and tell me b/c i'm not getting any of this in my feed which really pisses me off.

    this soup sounds and looks so good. gonna try it and get back to you cause you've never steered me wrong...yet.

    and i totally wanna see a pic of you in your new vegan booties. i die.


  26. Mmm.. looks and sounds good! I'm always interested in recipes from abroad as they often contain ingredients that are new to me. I have never heard of sriracha and shall also have to hunt for a Pacific vegetable stock. It's a learning curve!

  27. Such a comforting and awesome soup! Naan normally done without egg, you can stuff them with almost anything, coconut, fruit, nut but preferably dry products. I think the condensed milk isn't suitable as a filling. Hope this helps...

  28. Yum. Wish you were my neighbor.....I would drop by occasionally for a bite. Just saying.

  29. Would it taste as good without the sriracha? I don't like hot/spicy food at all.. Would you substitute something else for it? Thanks!