When trying out new recipes or cuisines at home, I usually stay away from my favorite takeout items as the comparison to the delicious restaurant options we have in Portland are just too easy to make! But then came along the beautiful Southeast Asian cookbook, Lemongrass and Lime. The recipe is simple and intimidating all at the same time, but MY GOODNESS the end result is spectacular!

I have never made a soup like this at home and probably would have never thought a ¼ cup of fish sauce and then some dehydrated shrimp and anchovies would create such depth! For the sake of being truthful, I did buy premade Nam Prik Pao sauce (the shrimp and anchovy mix) from my local Asian grocery, but this cookbook also provides a recipe for that sauce if you are able to make your own!

I will definitely make this again, though I do think I would make it spicier and try not to burn the crispy sliced garlic chips!  

Makes 4 servings


For the Broth: 

  • 1 tablespoons lemongrass powder
  • 1 tablespoons ground galangal
  • ⅓ cup cilantro root
  • 2 quarts low sodium chicken broth 
  • ¼ cup Nam Prik Pao (chili jam)
  • 2 medium shallots, large dice
  • 4 medium shallots, quartered 
  • Makrut lime leaves left whole 
  • 5 ounces unsweetened coconut milk
  • ¼ cup fish sauce 
  • ½ tablespoons sugar

For the garnish:

  • 1 pound ground pork 
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce 
  • 1 pound rice noodles
  • 16 cherry tomatoes, halved 
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced 
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves 
  • ¼ cup crispy garlic 
  • 3 scallions greens, thinly sliced
  • 2 limed, wedged


  1. Prepare the broth: combine lemongrass, galangal, and cilantro root in a large stockpot with a splash of water. Once heated, add in stock and bring to a boil. Add the chili jam, diced shallots, lime leaves, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil.
  2. Remove from heat, add the fish sauce and sugar, cover and let steep for 15-30 minutes.
  3. Strain the broth
  4. Finish the soup: Cook the pork in a large saute pan until mostly cooked but still a bit pink. Add in additional fish sauce (I added in some chili sambal for more heat). Drain the pork and let cool. 
  5. Bring a large pot of water to boil, cook noodles according to package instructions.
  6. Bring the broth to a simmer at medium-low heat. Add tomatoes, pork, and shallots. Cook for another 10 minutes.
  7. To serve, divide noodles into bowls pour broth over top and garnish with: cilantro leaves, crispy garlic, scallions, lime wedges.


Recipe inspired by the Tom Yum Noodle Soup in Lemongrass and Lime by Leah Cohen with Stephanie Banyas


October 22, 2020

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