Chicken and Coconut Milk Soup (Gaeng Com Yam Gai)

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Title: Chicken and Coconut Milk Soup (Gaeng Com Yam Gai)
Yield: 1 Servings
Categories: Thai, Soups


5 c "Thin" coconut milk
1 sm Chicken, sectioned and cut
-into bite-sized pieces
3 Stalks lemon grass, bruised
-and cut into 1" lengths
2 ts Laos powder (Ka)
3 Green onions, finely chopped
2 tb Coriander leaves, chipped
4 To 6 fresh Serrano
-chillies, seeded and
Juice of 2 limes
3 tb Fish sauce (Nam Pla)

Here's another classic "Tom Yam" type chicken soup. The "Laos"
powder is dried galangal, powdered. Unlike ginger, dried galangal
seems to retain most of it's character. If you use canned coconut
milk, the "Thin" milk is the more watery liquid in the can. The
thick condensed stuff is coconut "cream" (not to be confused with the
syrupy sweet coconut cream used for Pina Coladas). If you shake the
can up and combine the two, you have thick coconut milk.

A lovely lemony, creamy soup, Dom Yam Gai calls for chicken pieces cut
through the bone with a heavy cleaver, Chinese style. If you find
gnawing on chicken pieces and delicately trying to remove the bone,
vainly searching for a place to deposit it, inhibiting your dinner
conversation, you may debone the bird and substitute chicken pieces.
In either case, use both dark and light meats for color and nutrition.

[Although if you're talking at the table, ya got no reason to be
eating a dish this good! S.C. ;-} ]

In a saucepan, bring the "Thin" coconut milk to a boil. Add the
chicken pieces, lemon grass and Laos powder. Reduce heat and simmer
until the chicken is tender, about 15 minutes. Do not cover as this
will tend to curdle coconut milk. When the chicken is tender, add
the green onions, coriander leaves and chillies. Bring the heat up
just below boiling. Remove the pan from heat, stir in lime juice,
fish sauce and serve.

NOTE: Beef cut into thin strips or firm white fish pieces may be
substituted for chicken.

From "The Original Thai Cookbook" by Jennifer Brennan, GD/Perigee,
published by Putnam. 1981.

Posted by Stephen Ceideburg; February 6 1991.