Thai Red Curry Noodle Soup

  • ½ lb. jumbo shrimp, with head (about 6 pieces)
  • 4 cups water
  • ½ cup brown mushrooms, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, grated
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 1 (400 ml) can coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice, freshly squeezed (approximately juice from ½ lime)
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper (optional)
  • 250 grams (½ package) thin rice vermicelli noodles
  • ½ cup bean sprouts
  • 1 piece baby bok choy
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

  1. Prepare the soup base. Remove the heads and shells of the jumbo shrimp and devein them. Add water into a pot and bring it to boil over medium high heat. Add the shrimp heads and cook for 8 to 10 minutes. This adds a sweet umami flavour to the soup. Remove the shrimp heads with a mesh strainer.
  2. Add soup ingredients. Add peeled shrimp and chopped mushrooms, and cook for 2 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, fish sauce and brown sugar, and cook for 1 minute. Add in red curry paste and stir well to dissolve for about 1 minute. Pour in coconut milk and stir well to combine. Add lime juice and black pepper, and continue stirring.
  3. Add noodles. Stir in vermicelli rice noodles and cook until noodles are tender, about 3 minutes. Remove pot from heat.
  4. Assemble the soup. First scoop out the noodles into a medium-sized soup bowl with a noodle strainer. Then, add bean sprouts, baby bok choy and chopped cilantro. Pour curry soup base into the bowl together with the cooked shrimp and mushrooms.
  5. Serve immediately. Add in additional 1 tablespoon lime juice, if needed.
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