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Tom Kha Pla (Thai Coconut Fish Soup)

In Thailand, Tom Kha and Tom Yum Dishes are served with meal and rice. They’re not served as soup like how you get them in the restaurants around here. The spicy fragrant broth is perfect for keeping the meal exciting. This is the fish version of the delicious famous Tom Kha Gai. I use the chunky kingfish in this dish, and it gives the wonderful sweetness in the creamy white broth.

Tom Kha Fish 2

Tom Kha Pla is very easy to make. It takes roughly 10 minutes or so to cook. The hard work is in the prepping because if you want the delightful fresh Tom Kha Pla, then you will have to extract coconut milk and cream with your own hands. You can also used prawns and other seafood in this recipe, but use the best and freshest ingredients you can find.

Tom Kha Fish 1

And well, I serve this with steamy hot rice and some scallion omelet on the side, but you can have it as soup if you want. You know, you can’t go wrong with eating as long as you do what you love. But try it with rice if you can. Because this hot aromatic fish soup is super bomb and creamy, and you might need some rice to keep it down a notch.

Tom Kha Pla (Thai Coconut Fish Soup)


300 gm kingfish fillets- cut into big chunks

200 gm oyster mushroom- tear into big pieces

2 tbsp Tom Kha Paste (See note below)

3  sliced fresh galangal

1 1/2 cup coconut milk *

1 1/2 cup coconut cream **

1 tomato- quartered

2 whole red Chilies

Chinese Celery leaves for garnishing

1 tbsp fish sauce or to taste

1 tsp sugar

How to Make Tom Kha paste

2 tbsp chopped lemongrass

8 tbsp chopped galangal

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.


Bring coconut milk to boil, and add galangal and Tom Kha Paste.

Add fish and dried mushroom; let it boil for 1-2 minutes.

Add tomato, whole red chilies, sugar, and fish sauce. Cook further for a minute or so.

Add coconut cream and cook further until the creamy broth is about to boil.

Check the seasoning, garnish with some celery leaves, and serve hot with some rice.

 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 coconut milk.

Tom Kha Fish 3


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