Tom Yum Paste

I do have to apologize in advance. I obviously enjoyed my class very much. 🙂

Thei ngredients
Thei ngredients

I have a very thin, but covered the basics, kind of cookbook from my Thai cooking class. It was simple, but understandable. I have the peanut sauce, was taught the green chili paste recipe, but there was one thingmissing, the tom yum paste recipe.

It was part of the condiments list and can actually be store bought. But my chef’s tom yum paste was homemade, and what beats homemade, really? I do remember how the paste looks like (red, surprisingly) and how it tasted. So I went online and searched for a recipe. I had to decide if it was “IT” before even making it. The only clue to this recipe was when I asked my chef teacher about it, she said it had lots of ingredients, and takes a long time to cook. The hunt was on.

Before pounding
Before pounding

I found this recipe quite easily but this was almost like a salsa version. I wanted one that tasted and resembled my chef’s paste. But this was almost like it, but uncooked. So I decided to use this as a guide, and make my own. And it turned out perfect! So perfect that my ate has been spooning the paste on her rice 😛

Making tom ka gai
Making tom ka gai

Tom Yum Paste Recipe

5 lemon grass stalks (3 inches long each) minced
3 onion leeks stalks (white part), minced
8 kaffir lime leaves, minced
6 pieces of garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
4 tablespoons of grated ginger (I didn’t have galanggal)
a bunch of cillantro, minced
chili pepper, to taste, minced (or use chili paste)
1/2 cup to 3/4 cups of coconut milk
2 lemons
oyster sauce
fish sauce
soy sauce
shrimp paste

Pound and make a paste out of the first four ingredients, including the chili (if using peppers) until fine. This will take a while. You may use a blender as well, but I am old fashioned 🙂 In a hot pan, add the oil, then put in the tomatoes, onion and garlic. Add in the ginger, along with the macerated veggies. Let this cook for a while, then add the seasoning of the usual fish sauce, oyster sauce, soy sauce and lemon juice. Allow the flavors to get yummy. Then add the coconut milk and some sugar. Let it cook enough that the oils separate from the paste. Taste. Adjust seasoning. Use for tom yum, tom ka, or even for meat and seafood, and on rice 🙂

Cooked tom ka gai
Cooked tom ka gai

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