Thai Squash and Coconut Milk Soup
I brought this to work for lunch and the steamy aroma of lemongrass, lime, and shallots wafted around my cubicle and down the hall. I was mid-slurp when I looked up and found five colleagues hovering around my desk demanding asking what was I eating that smelled so good. When I told them it was a Thai squash and coconut milk soup, they insisted I share the recipe asap. So here you go friends - get your squash soup on. (adapted from Williams-Sonoma Soup of the Day)
- 4 shallots (quartered)
- 2 red or green Thai chiles (or serrano chiles, or jalapeño peppers, seeds removed)
- 1 lemongrass stalk (center white part only, smashed and roughly chopped)
- 1 can coconut milk
- 2 cups chicken stock or water
- 6 kaffir lime leaves (stems removed)
- 4 cups peeled squash (either acorn or butternut, chopped into 2 cm cubes)
- 1 1/2 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- Thai basil leaves, chopped cilantro, fresh limes, green onions, and/or chopped Thai chiles
In a blender or food processor, combine the shallots, chiles, lemongrass and 1/4 cup water and pulse until a paste forms.
Open the can of coconut milk without shaking it. Heat a large pot on medium heat and add the spice paste and thick creamy part of the coconut milk to the pot. Stir together and let simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The paste will get quite fragrant and bubbly.
Add the remaining coconut milk, stock, lime leaves and squash and stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low and let simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes, or until the squash is tender.
Remove the lime leaves and discard. Either blend the soup in a blender in batches or use immersion blender to blend until the soup is nice and creamy. Stir in the fish sauce, lime juice and sugar and serve with garnishes.