Recipe: Tom Kha Kai

As spring is now upon us I have been cooking up as many fruits and veggies that are in season as possible. So, after noting that jackfruit is in season (even though I planned to use canned lol) I thought it was finally time to cook up some jackfruit “carnitas” as my girlfriend and I deeply miss Pure Luck’s Jack’s Super Burrito Wrap (btw they really need to note on their site that the they aren’t open anymore I just realized!). Anyways, the Vegan Girl’s Guide to Life has a pretty awesome looking recipe, so we decided to finally make a trip to the Asian market near our place to pick some up.

What does this have anything to do with a Tom Kha Kai recipe? Well the ingredients are found at the Asian market of course! So as to not waste the trip and because my girlfriend has a deep rooted love for this particular soup we decided to give it a go and I must say, it came out effing awesome!

I do not speak Thai but according to my Wikipedia diploma Tom Kha Kai literally translates to “chicken galangal soup” but don’t fret, this is one of those recipes that so easily translates well veganized that you wonder why it wasn’t simply plant based to begin with. The real source of the flavor in this flavor powerhouse of a soup is in the galangal, lemon grass and also in the kaffir lime leaves. At its core these 3 magic ingredients are all that is needed to make a rocking Tom Kha Kai worth writing home about.

Here’s what we rolled with (adapted from this recipe here)

  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 3 cups no chicken stock
  • 3 stalks lemongrass, bruised then cut into 2″ pieces
  • 4 kaffir lime leaves, torn
  • 4 (3") slices of galangal
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 3-4 Thai bird’s eye chilies, stemmed
  • 1 cup mushrooms (of choice), sliced
  • ¾ tsp agave
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 3 Tbsp lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp Shoyu
  • 4 Tbsp minced cilantro


  1. In a stock pot bring the no chicken stock to a boil. Add galangal, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, onion and agave to a boil. Simmer 10 minutes.
  2. Add coconut milk, chilies, and shoyu. Simmer 10 more minutes.
  3. Add mushrooms and heat through until mushrooms are tender.
  4. Remove the pot from heat and add lime juice and cilantro.

Note: You can actually put whatever veggies you want in addition to or in place of the mushrooms. We did a second batch with cabbage, bok choy and I think it was carrot and it was also very good.

This dish is also traditionally served with some sort of rice, usually jasmine so I also did up this amazingly good Coconut Curry Rice w/ Golden Berries:

I’ll give ya a deal and give ya two for one today, here’s the recipe (which was adapted from this recipe here)

  • 1 ¼ tablespoons Earth balance
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 1/3 cup dried golden berries
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • ½ cup no chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 bay leaf

Directions: Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add onion, and sauté until tender. Add curry powder and rice; cook 2 minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove bay leaf.

Damn, I think I am hungry now…

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