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Tom Yum Soup with Mussels Recipe - Thailand (Gordon's Great Escapes)

MiMi Aye's Channel 4 Food recipe for Fragrant Tom Yum Soup

Tom yum, that soup of wonders, that spicy restorative, that Thai dish which even gave its name to a Tony Jaa action film for reasons that still escape me (imagine if Mission Impossible 3 was renamed Mulligatawny).

There's a lot of controversy about what constitutes an authentic tom yum (sometimes spelt tom yam) - should it have tomatoes, what type of mushrooms if any, prawns or chicken - and it seems some recipes like to throw in everything but the proverbial kitchen sink.


I've even seen some people use coconut milk, which makes it too close to tom kha ghai for my liking, and any version with pineapple is going straight in the sin bin.

Anyway, I have to admit I used to err on the side of plenty, but I found it became too much of a jumble, so these days, I like to strip it down and use as few ingredients as possible. This gives a fresher, lighter, sharper taste - a broth that almost sparkles with clarity.

Here's my Channel 4 Food recipe for Fragrant Tom Yum Soup with Mussels to accompany tonight's episode of Gordon's Great Escapes which sees Ramsay take on Thailand.


I've used mussels this time - you could also use clams, the classic prawns (tom yum goong), a mix of seafood, or chicken.

Whichever you use, adjust the cooking time accordingly - you want to gently poach the meat, to preserve its character and let the flavours sing.

My Fragrant Tom Yum Soup recipe on Channel 4 Food

Gordon Ramsay's Great Escapes - Thailand
Monday 30 May on Channel 4 at 9 pm


Hollow Legs said…
Lovely recipe. I agree - coconut milk is a MEGA NO.

I like to add a tsp of nam prik (snigger) pao at the end. Gives a lovely smokiness and the red hue.
Annie said…
I'm making tom yum goong for a private booking this week. Made it for the first time last week and we loved it so much we've had it every day since! As you say, a restorative dish. DH is recovering from a mini stroke and has found it the perfect food for him
Anonymous said…
That is such a vibrant photo! I love the Tom Yum from The Wrestlers, a Thai pub in Cambridge but it usually doesn't include whole mussels.
meemalee said…
@Lizzie - Ooh, now *that's* an addition I heartily approve of.

@Annie - Oh, sorry to hear about DH but that's lovely - I've always seen it as Asian penicillin.

@karohemd - Thank you! Some of the best Thai food seems to be found in pubs weirdly :)
Kavey said…
I finally caught an episode of this programme and to my surprise, I rather liked it. Much better than Gary Rhodes around wherever, so arrogant that even when admitting he knows nothing about the cuisine he questions in a rude way everything the chef does.
I rather liked Gordon in this!
Must catch up on rest now.
PS I love seeing your name on the CHannel 4 website.
PDH said…
I've loved this series so far and your recipes look great. I'm even tempted by this one and as I'm not a fan of the Mussels that is saying something!
meemalee said…
@Kavey - I didn't see the Gary Rhodes series but it sounds *interesting*. Thank you re Channel 4 site!

@Pavel - Thanks Pavel - and that's very flattering as I *knew* you didn't like mussels :)
William Leigh said…
Love it but for once I agree with Lizzie - nam prik pao adds some lovely smoky notes x
Food Urchin said…
The first time I tried Tom Yum, it gave me the colossal sweats but it was so delicious. My tolerance for that hot/sour taste has improved since then. Lovely