Hot and sour shrimp soup (thai)

Yield: 6 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 pounds Medium shrimp
2 Sticks fresh lemongrass; OR Dried lemongrass
4 Kaffir lime leaves (fresh or dried) -OR- Finely grated lemon zest
1½ quart Chicken stock
1 tablespoon Fish sauce or salt to taste
3 tablespoons Fresh lime juice or to taste
1 teaspoon Thai chili paste (nam prik pow) OR see NOTE
15 ounces Canned straw mushrooms; -OR- Fresh mushrooms
3 Fresh hot green chilies
3 tablespoons Cilantro

NOTE: The following mixture may be substituted for 1 teaspoon Thai chili paste: ¼ ts cayenne, ¼ tsp sugar and ½ tsp oil Wash, peel, de-vein shrimp. Save shells. Wash shrimp again, drain, pat dry, cover and refrigerate. If using fresh lemongrass, cut each stick into three 2 inch pieces--starting from rounded bottom end.

Discard straw-like top. Lightly crush the 6 pieces.

In a pan, combine lemongrass, lime leaves, stock, and shrimp shells.

Bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Strain stock, then add fish sauce, lime juice, and chili paste. Adjust fish sauce and lime juice to taste. *Add more chili paste for more heat.

Drain straw mushrooms and add to stock. (If using fresh mushrooms, quarter them and drop in lightly salted boiling water. Boil 1 minute. Drain and add to stock.) **The soup can be prepared to this point several hours ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator.** Prepare garnish shortly before serving. Cut green chilies into fine rounds. Wash and dry cilantro. Just before serving, heat the soup, when it begins to boil, drop in peeled shrimp. Cook on medium heat for 2 minutes or just until shrimp turn opaque. Garnish with chilies and cilantro leaves. Serve hot.

Source: Madhur Jaffrey's _Far Eastern Cookery_ From: sehender@... (Sarah Henderson)

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