Gaeng som (Northern sour soup)

The spice is certainly right in this fragrant and full-flavoured Asian inspired soup from Ross Burdon
By Ross Burden
Gaeng som (Northern sour soup)
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: easy



  • 50 g mimosa leaves (cha oom), hredded
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp fish sauce, (fish sauce)
  • 1 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 1.2 litres of water
  • 6 extra large, whole prawns, eveined
  • juice of ½ limes
  • 1 tsp palm sugar
  • 2 courgettes, halved and very finely sliced diagonally
  • 50 g coriander, hopped

For the spice paste:

  • 5 large dried chillies
  • 10 Thai shallots, peeled
  • 5 slices of galangal
  • 50 g shrimps, raw and peeled


1. First make the spice paste by blending the dried chilies, shallots, galangal and shrimps with a mortar and pestle until smooth.

2. Mix the mimosa leaves and with the eggs and season with the fish sauce. Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook the eggs until they form a thick omelette. Leave to cool and cut into 3 x 3cm squares.

3. Pour the water into a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the spice paste and simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Add the prawns and simmer 3 more minutes.

5. Just before serving, adjust the soup with a squeeze of lime juice and the palm sugar.

6. Serve the soup in individual bowls; making sure each bowl has a prawn and a sprinkling of courgettes.

7. Float the egg fritters on top to and garnish with the coriander.

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