Shrimp and Coconut Soup

When one is feeling under the weather, or the first breath of Fall is felt in the air, there is nothing more comforting than a bowl of soup.  In addition to providing comfort, soups tend to be economical, healthy, easy to prepare and they fill the house with a delicious smell while simmering away.  Which all leaves me wondering, why don’t I make soup more often?  I realized that I have only a few soup recipes that I make often but lots of recipes that I have always wanted to try.  Therefore, this Autumn season I will be making a new soup recipe each week and posting them on the blog for you to try out as well, if you wish.

There was a wonderful cafe right down the street from the last house we lived in and I spent way too much money consuming bowls of their Shrimp and Coconut Milk Soup.  This soup is spicy, yet creamy with a hint of tangy lime and was finished off with tender, perfectly cooked pieces of shrimp.  I have been thinking of trying to recreate this soup at home, so I finally took the plunge recently and below is the recipe I came up with.  This recipe is not quite the same as the restaurant version but it turned out pretty well.  It is very easy and quick to prepare and is a great, healthy alternative to cream soups.  I will be going back to taste the cafe version and try to discover the missing ingredient (at least that’s my excuse), and I’ll let you know if I figure it out!  In the meantime, here is a reasonable facsimile:

Spicy Shrimp and Coconut Soup

As I mentioned earlier, the restaurant version of this soup is quite spicy and I love it that way.  However, in an attempt to get my two year old to eat this soup, I left out the chili sauce and my husband and I just added it to our own bowls.  It actually tasted just as good with the chili sauce added later and my daughter ended up loving the un-spicy version, so if you have kids it’s worth a try!

Serves 2


1 Tablespoon canola oil

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1-inch piece of ginger, minced

2 cups chicken broth

1 19-ounce can coconut milk

1 cup cold water

1 to 2 teaspoons Siracha chili sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 pound raw shrimp, peeled, deveined and cut in half

Juice from half of a lime

lime wedges, cilantro leaves, and extra chili sauce for serving

1.  Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the garlic and ginger to the pot and saute for about 30 seconds, or until fragrant.

2.  Add the broth, coconut milk, water, chili sauce and salt to the pan and bring to a boil.  Simmer for about 5 minutes to allow the flavors to infuse the broth.

3.  Add the shrimp and lime juice and simmer until shrimp is just cooked, about 1 minute.  Remove from heat immediately and serve garnished with cilantro leaves with the lime wedges and extra chili sauce on the side.

I served this soup with wedges of papaya and I think it would also be great with melon or grapes on the side to balance out the spiciness.  Please, let me know if you figure out what the missing ingredient might be and also send your favorite soup recipes my way, I am still looking for ideas!