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Tom Kha Khai

Tom Kha Khai is a creamy and aromatic soupy chicken curry, a famous dish in Thai kitchens along side Tom Yum. Tom Kha Khai is quite mild but loaded up with beautiful aroma of galangal and the sassy sourness in the creamy coconut body.

To make a perfect hot bowl of Tom Kha Khai, the freshest ingredients have to be carefully selected and picked. I always extracted coconut milk and coconut cream by hands because no package or can could give the lively sweet and beautiful thickness in the dish like real coconut.

But if you are in the situation that you could only reach for canned coconut cream, then the decent Tom Kha Khai could only be achieved with the auditions of love and care.

Tom Kha Khai is best serve hot with some rice. The savoury cream sauce melted into the rice making every bite feel overindulged. It was pungent sour, rich and aromatic. The chicken was tender and the mushroom was beautifully softened. It was a beautiful composition of flavour.

Tom Kha Khai

Ingredients (4 Servings)

300 gm boneless Chicken- sliced

200 gm mushroom- sliced

1 tbsp Tom Kha Paste (See note below)

5-6 pieces dried galangal- fresh even better (optional)

1 1/2 cup coconut milk

1 1/2 cup coconut cream

1 tomato- quartered

1 tbsp fish sauce or to taste

1 tsp sugar

Tom Kha paste

2 tbsp chopped lemongrass

8 tbsp chopped galangal (I use 10 dried galangal soaked in warm water for 15 minutes)

8 shallots

8 cloves garlic

10 coriander root & stem- chopped

5 red chilies- minced

Juice of 1 lime

1 tsp salt

1 tsp oil

Blend everything together until smooth paste.


  1. Bring coconut milk to boil, add Tom Kha Paste.
  2. Add chicken and dried galangal; let it boil for 2 minutes.
  3. Add mushroom, tomato, sugar, and fish sauce. Cook further for a few minutes or until mushroom is cooked.
  4. Add coconut cream and cook further until the curry is about to boil.
  5. Check the seasoning and serve hot with some rice.

Note on coconut cream and coconut milk

Add 2 cup of fresh grated coconut in the blender and add about 1 cup of warm water. Blend for 1 minute and strain the cream out through the fine strainer. Squeeze to get all cream out of the coconut. This first pressing yields about 1 1/2 cup of thick cream.

From the same grated coconut, add 1 1/2 cup of warm water and start blending again for 2 minutes then you can extract the remaining milk. This process yields about 1 1/2 cup of thinner milk.

Have a beautiful day,

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