All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Tomuyamukun / tom yum goong

Here is the tom yum goong I longed for. I finally was able to make this simple soup that indeed reminds me of what I routinely had from a locally popular Isan restaurant near my apartment in Bangkok. There is no secret. As with any cuisine, all you need is good ingredients. What I learned from my trials and errors over the years is not to add too much of aromatic ingredients and make a good stock.

1/4 of recipe:
111 calories; 14.9 g protein; 2.0 g fat; 10.3 g carbohydrate; 8.1 g net carbs; 427 mg sodium; 93 mg cholesterol; 2.3 g fiber

(Serves 4)

16-20 (approx. 1 lb/450 g) shrimp with heads & shells (use heads & shells of 10 shrimp for stock below)
2-3 (150-160 g) medium eringi king oyster mushrooms

For stock
1,000 cc water
100 g shrimp heads & shells (equivalent to heads and shells of 10 or so medium-size shrimp)
5 prik kee noo Thai peppers
1/4-1/3 stalk lemon grass (1/3 stalk or 12 g used for recipe)
3-4 slices galangal Thai ginger (10 g in photo)
3-4 medium kaffir lime leaves
Handful (10-15 g) cilantro stems (cilantro root substitute; use leaves for topping)

For seasoning
1 tsp tamarind paste
1 tbsp nam prik pao Thai red chili paste
2 1/4 tsp nam pla
1/2 lime

Handful cilantro leaves (for topping)


Remove shrimp heads and shells. Keep 100 g for this recipe, and save the rest for another use.
Chop lemon grass and cilantro stems.
Chop Thai peppers, and pound in mortar.


Heat medium pan, put shrimp heads and shells, and cook (without water) until turning pink, while crushing heads with spatula.

When all shrimp shells are basically pink, pour some water, go over bottom with spatula to get all the good flavor from shrimp, and simmer for a while, until all shrimp shells are pink.


Pour remainder of water, add Thai pepper, galangal, lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves and cilantro stems.

Once boiling, reduce heat to medium low, and simmer for 20-30 minutes, skimming from time to time.


Meanwhile, devein shrimp, clean with potato starch, rinse, and drain well. 

Cut eringi oyster mushrooms into 3-4 cm in length and slice thickly.


Strain and obtain 800 cc stock.
If not enough, add water to get 800 cc.
Heat stock, add eringi, and simmer.


When eringi is done, add tamarind paste, man prik pao, and 2/3 of specified amount of (1 1/2 tsp) nam pla.


When broth boils again, add shrimp, and cook until opaque.
Squeeze lime.
Taste, and add more nam pla as necessary.

Serve with cilantro leaves (and lime wedges).

  • Eringi is a substitute for straw mushrooms typically used in tom yum goon. Among fresh mushrooms available in the Pacific Northwest, eringi seems the best substitute, as it does not add the sourness of button mushrooms or bitterness of shimeji mushrooms.
  • I use nam pla with 690 mg sodium per tablespoon.
  • Broth, if you have leftovers, makes a great soup base for noodles or zosui soupy rice. 
  • Sodium content of stock above is 409 mg sodium per 800 cc. 

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