Soups for winter | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 19, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, December 19, 2017

Recipes From Siam

Soups for winter

Nothing like a warm mug of thick soup to warm you up when you are tucked in a cosy corner of your home. The best of soup inspirations come from winter veggies that are readily available in your home.


(cabbage with filling soup)


1 cabbage 

½ cup mince chicken 

6 Shitake mushroom

2 carrots (ideally 3-inch size)

50 g Chinese chives 

For the paste

2 garlic cloves 

1 coriander root 

¼ tsp white pepper seeds 

Seasoning —

2 tsp oyster sauce 

½ tsp soya sauce 

1 tsp corn flour 

½ tsp chicken powder 

Ingredients (for soup) —

2½ cup chicken stock 

2 coriander roots

2 garlic cloves 

2 tbsp coriander leaves 

¼ tsp white pepper powder 


Pound garlic, coriander root and white pepper seeds in a mortar. Make a fine paste. Chop 2 shitake mushrooms and keep 4 for garnishing. Chop 1 carrot and leave 1 for garnish. 

Mix the minced chicken, chopped mushroom and carrots with the paste. Add the seasoning ingredients and knead only until mixed thoroughly.

Bring the water to boil. Now add salt and cabbage and cook on high heat for 5 minutes. Remove the cabbage and slowly separate the leaves and let cool. Blanch the chives in the same water.

Place 1½ tablespoon chicken mixture in the centre of the cabbage leaf and fold to make a square pouch. Tie the pouch nicely with the blanched chives. Steam for 10 minutes. 

Remove from the heat and place onto soup bowls. Bring chicken stock to boil and season to taste. Spoon up hot soup to cabbage bowl. Add carved and boiled shitake mushroom and carrot. Sprinkle with coriander leaves and pepper powder.


(Spicy chicken soup with coconut milk)


200g boneless chicken meat, cut into bite sized pieces 

1 cup mushrooms, quartered

4 lemon grass, cut 1-inch long

¼ cup sliced galangal, about 1cm thick

4-5 Kaffir lime leaves

250ml coconut milk

1½ tbsp fish sauce

2 tbsp lime juice

1 tbspsugar

1 cup water 

1 tsp salt 

4-5 Bird's eye chillies, crushed 

½ cup chopped coriander 

½ cup saw leaf coriander 


In a medium pot, add coconut milk, lemon grass, and galangal. Bring to a boil. Add water, chicken and mushrooms. Cook until the chicken is done. Add sugar, salt, kaffir lime leaves and saw leaf coriander. Turn down the heat. Add lime juice, chilies and fish sauce, sprinkle with coriander. Turn the heat off and serve.


(vegetable soup)


For soup paste —

3 tbsp dried shrimp 

½ tsp white peppercorn 

1 tsp shrimp paste 

4 tsp shallots (small onions) 

2 tsp lesser ginger(gra chai) 

3 cups chicken stock 

1 tsp fish sauce 

Other ingredients 

½ cup pumpkin (cut in bite size)

100g spinach (optional)

1 cup sponge gourd 

½cup oyster mushrooms, or any kind of mushrooms 

250g young leaf of pumpkin, cucumber, gourd, etc. 

1-2 bird's eye chilli (as per taste)

½ cup lemon basil


In a mortar, combine all ingredients and pound to paste. (Note: this paste can be refrigerated for a month). Keep the vegetable paste ready. Bring the chicken stock to a boil and add paste. Add pumpkin (boil for a few minutes), then mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, chili, sayote, and finally spinach. When the vegetables are done, add lemon basil. Remove from heat and serve hot.

Photo courtesy: Shaheda Yesmin

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