Sunday, June 21, 2009

Asian Fusion play on Kung Tom Yam (Prawn Soup)

My husband LOVES Kung Tom Yam but he loves it even more when I prepare it in an Asian fusion manner....a stock with more flavor...using noodles....more like a hot pot than just a soup. His favorite noodles are udon...and easily incorporated. He prefers the shrimp when I sauté it first as opposed to tossing it in raw to boil in the soup. The carmelization from the skillet gives the shrimp a little more umph! I usually take about 12lbs of shrimp shells and cook them for a couple of hours in a huge pot of water...reducing it to 6 cups of stock so the flavor is intense. In this recipe, I'm using lobster stock from a Catalan recipe I made a few days ago....so there's a little saffron in the lobster stock but fantastically delicious.

As I always say....use your imagination...use your senses..there is no right or wrong (unless you are arguing with a French Chef!!). Food should give you pleasure...and it's up to you to experiment to YOUR liking.

In my case...I've spoiled my husband...to the point that when we go out...invariably, he wishes I was cooking for him at home....usually a much better meal than what he ordered. It's an easy way to show him how much I appreciate him.

The main thing..have fun while you're cooking. I now have my husband cook with me so we spend even more time together...appreciate what we've created together and... steal a few kisses in between!

Ingredients:
6 cups lobster stock
1 tsp salt
2 stalks lemon grass
4 kafir lime leaves
3 fresh chilis
1 TBSN Fish Sauce
2 TBSN Lemon juice - Fresh Squeezed
2 lbs colossal shrimp - 8-12 size
1 TBSN olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 fresh red chili - seeded and thinly sliced
2 TBSN fresh Cilantro, chopped
4 Scallions, chopped

2-3 servings udon noodles or rice noodles

Directions:
1. Shell and de-vein shrimp/prawns. Since I'm using the lobster stock, I'll save all the shells in the freezer for a later date when I want to make a shrimp stock.
2. Combine the lobster stock, salt, lemon grass, kafir lime leaves and whole chilis in a pot. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 20. minutes.
3. Strain stock and return liquid to the pot. Add fish sauce and lemon juice.
4. Pat the raw shrimp dry with a towel and season with salt and pepper. Heat a skillet, add a TBSN of olive oil and when hot, place the shrimp in the pan. After a minute or 2, flip over to carmelize the other side for 2 minutes.
5. Toss shrimp into the soup stock and let sit for 2-3 minutes.
6. For an individual serving: I take a package of udon noodles (refrigerated section of your asian grocer) and place it at the bottom of a japanese soup bowl....pour the stock on top...add 6 pieces of shrimp...scatter some scallions and hot chili pepper and serve.
For a table: I do the same thing, but use a hotpot or a small dutch oven..or whatever you have...instead of the bowl.
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