Tom Kha - (Thai Coconut Soup)

Serves 4-6

Liquid:
1 and a half pints of veg stock
2 cans coconut milk

Flavours:
1 green chilli, seeded and finely sliced (or 1 tsp chilli sauce (as hot as you like it)
2 knobs galangal, each knob sliced in to inch chunks
6 kaffir lime leaves, torn a bit
3 lemon grass stalks, bashed at the thick end and cut in to 2 inch lengths
10 black peppercorns
3 cloves garlic, finely sliced not crushed
2 tablespoons fish sauce
3 tbsp fresh lime juice (1 or 1 and a half limes dependin on taste)
fresh coriander

Veggies:
half an aubergine cut in to small chunks
5 or 6 spring onions finely chopped
3 stalks pak choi or spinach, shredded
6 baby sweetcorn cut in to 4 pieces
1 carrot, peeled then peeled again into long orange ribbons
1 can straw mushrooms

Method

1. - Place the stock into a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Stir in the coconut milk, chilli, garlic, galangal, lime leaves, lemon grass and peppercorns.

2. - Simmer for 5 minutes then add the aubergine and spring onions. Simmer for further 10 mins or until aubo is soft.

3. - Stir in the pak choi/spinach, carrot and sweetcorn, simmer for couple of mins.

4. - Add straw mushrooms, fish sauce, lime juice and simmer for 2 or 3 more mins.

5. - Add chopped coriander just before serving.

Can also add chopped tofu 5-10 mins before end of cooking .....tasty!