Fragrant Coconut and Lemongrass Chicken Soup


  • serves 4
  • Preparation time:
  • Cooking time:


8 slices galangal
3 slices ginger
6 coriander roots
6 red shallots
6 red bird’s-eye chillies
12 kaffir lime leaves
3 stalks lemongrass
1 litre coconut milk
zest of 1 kaffir lime, minced
1 litre white chicken stock
80 ml fish sauce
4 chicken thigh fillets, cut in half
75 ml strained lime juice
2 tablespoons Thai basil leaves
2 tablespoons coriander leaves


To make the soup, finely chop 6 slices of the galangal, ginger, coriander roots, shallots, 3 of the chillies, 6 of the lime leaves and 2 stalks of the lemongrass. Set the remaining aromatics aside for final garnish.
Bring coconut milk to a boil in a large saucepan and boil, uncovered, for a few minutes. Stir in chopped aromatics and lime zest then return to a boil.
Add stock and fish sauce and return to a boil once more.
Add chicken thighs, then reduce heat to low and simmer gently for about 15 minutes until chicken is cooked.
Remove chicken carefully with a strainer or slotted spoon and set aside until cool enough to handle.
Strain soup through a fine-meshed sieve, discarding solids, then return to
rinsed-out pan and add lime juice. Taste and adjust if necessary.
Slice remaining chillies and finely shred remaining lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves.
To serve, shred chicken while warm, then pile meat into each bowl.
Ladle soup over chicken and garnish with sliced chilli, shredded lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves, basil and coriander leaves.
Mince remaining galangal and add to bowls, then stir and serve immediately.