Tom yum is referred to the two identical soups hailing from South East Asian countries. The basic characteristics of this soup are the hot and sour taste along with fragrance of distinct herbs. Tom yum recipes are quite easy follow for home cooking, but its commercial version, especially the ones sold in restaurants, is the most popular. The commercially packed soup recipe is relatively different from the homemade version in aspects of flavor and aroma. The most modern tom yum recipe is ‘tom yum nam khon’. This recipe is fondly served in Thai cuisine and also well-liked outside Thailand.
History of Tom Yum Recipes
Basically, tom yum is a soup dish originated in Laos and Thailand. It is also known as ‘tom yam’ in Royal Thai General System of Transcription. Since the time of its origin, this soup is popular in Thai cuisine as well as in neighboring cuisines such as Malay cuisine as well as in cuisine of Singapore. The term tom yum is also associated with the financial crisis aroused in Asia in the year 1997. The crisis is often called as ‘Tom Yum Goong Crisis’.
Ingredients Prescribed by Tom Yum Recipes
It is well-known that tom yum is a name given to the two similar soup dishes. Though both the soups are identical, but few variations in ingredients are there. The royal version of soup in Laotian cuisine contains rice, whereas regular version does not include rice. The hot and sour flavor is offered to the soup by using lemon grass, kaffir lime, lemon juice, chili-pepper sauce and fish sauce. Galangal is also used generously as an herb to make the basic broth for the tom yum. Prawns, chicken and a combination of seafood typically form the main ingredient of the dish. The variety of mushrooms such as oyster or straw mushroom is usually incorporated to provide extra punch. Coconut milk is often included in few variations of the soup. For garnishing, cilantro or coriander leaves are used.
Method of Preparation of Tom Yum Recipes
The home made tom yum is prepared with boiling method. The ready made chicken stock may be used. The chicken stock brings to a boil in a pan. All the ingredients including herbs and spices are added one by one and cooked until all flavors are blended well. Seafood is added to the stock and checked frequently for doneness. Coconut milk is added to give richness and creamy texture to tom yum. The thickness of the soup can be adjusted by adding enough coconut milk. For adjusting the taste of extra salt, lime juice may be incorporated. Brown sugar and garlic are the additional ingredients that are inculcated to the dish for giving a palatable taste.
Serving and Eating of Tom Yum
Tom yum is usually served as an appetizer. It can also be consumed along with main course dishes. It is a hearty soup, hence quite filling. It should always be served piping hot with a garnish of chopped cilantro. In few versions, rice noodles are also included in the dish while serving.
Health Facts Related to Tom Yum Recipes
Tom yum is indeed a healthy soup. The potent combination of authentic herbs and mild spices makes this dish quite beneficial. While doing scientific research on this popular Thai soup, the fact came into being that this soup is an immune-booster and contains natural properties to avoid cold and flu. The addition of coconut milk enhances the nutritional value of tom yum.