Vegan Thai Soup with Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is a staple amongst Caribbean and Southeast Asian cuisine, and rightfully so. In addition to providing a lactose-free alternative to cow's milk, coconut milk has multiple applications. It can, of course, serve as a rich and creamy...

Coconut milk is a staple amongst Caribbean and Southeast Asian cuisine, and rightfully so. In addition to providing a lactose-free alternative to cow's milk, coconut milk has multiple applications. It can, of course, serve as a rich and creamy soup base for dishes like that of the title recipe. But it also lends its texture and subtle flavor to meals as diverse as curry and rice pudding.

Additionally, coconut milk is rich in nutrients. These include phosphorus, which is essential in building strong bones, and lauric acid, which can actually reduce bad cholesterol. Thus, the inclusion of coconut milk in almost any recipe is an easy way to boost the nutritional value of a meal. Westerners have begun to take notice of this, and now consume coconut (in all forms) in numbers that may soon rival those of their eastern neighbors.

To experience the wonders of coconut milk, treat yourself with this modern take on Thai Coconut Soup. This soup has been altered from traditional Thai coconut soup, using tofu in place of chicken, which makes it vegan-friendly and healthy.

What you'll need:

  • 1lb firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 stalks of lemongrass
  • 1/2 cup jasmine rice
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1-1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 15 oz coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder

Directions:

  1. In a glass baking dish, drizzle the tofu strips with the soy sauce and lime juice. Let the tofu marinade while you prepare the soup base.
  2. Combine the vegetable broth, lemon grass, and ginger in a large saucepan. Heat to just a simmer. Add the jasmine rice to the mix and allow to cook for another 20 minutes, or until the rice is done.
  3. Pour the coconut milk into the saucepan and give it time to return to a simmer.
  4. If you wish, can saute the tofu strips in a skillet over medium heat until brown. This will add a crisp texture to the tofu. If not, skip to the next step.
  5. Add the tofu strips, with the marinade, to the saucepan. Cook for an additional 2 minutes, then stir in the chili powder and fresh cilantro.

Dish out the soup into 2-4 serving bowls and serve. For additional flavor, forgo the salt and pepper, and squirt some fresh lime juice in your soup instead.

For questions, or to share your favorite coconut milk recipe, contact us. We'd love to hear your thoughts.