Chicken & Oyster Mushroom Soup


  • 4 lemongrass stalks chopped (remove the yucky outer leaves first)
  • 6 shallots chopped
  • 1 dozen 1 inch pieces of cilantro stems (or 4 cilantro roots chopped)
  • some variety of chiles (go for whatever heat you are most into) – 4 finger-type red chiles
  • 4c chicken broth
  • 4c coconut milk
  • 1tsp salt
  • 15 thin slices of galangal (ours was still well preserved in sherry) or  half as much thinly sliced ginger
  • 6 kaffir lime leaves (or 2tsp lime zest)
  • 1/2lb sliced chicken breasts
  • 6oz sliced oyster mushrooms (no substitutes! really!)
  • 5tbsp fish sauce
  • 2tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2tbsp chopped cilantro


Place lemongrass, shallots, cilantro and half the chiles in a food processor. Process until well mashed but not a paste.

In pot bring chicken broth and coconut milk to a boil. Season with salt. Add galangal (ginger) and lime leaves.

Return to boil, add chicken and mushrooms, reduce heat to low. Simmer until chicken is cooked, about eight minutes.

Add mashed ingredients after chicken cooks, allow to heat through.

In a bowl stir fish sauce, lime juice, cilantro and remaining chiles. Place in individual bowls and ladle soup on top.

This soup smells incredibly good both during making it and after reheating it as a lunch take with. Lemongrass has just got to be some sort of ingredient of the goddesses!  If you don’t want to put some away, half this recipe…and smile!