Tom kha tofu

Tom kha tofu

The Green Kitchen
Johanna Frenkel

When Elsa was 6 months old we travelled around the world together. We spent 2 months in Thailand and tom kha tofu became one of our favourite meals. It is basically a mild coconut milk soup with a lime flavour, filled with mushrooms, tofu, cabbage and tomato. We got to know the chef at a lovely little restaurant, and luckily she was happy to share the recipe with us. The kha root, also known as galangal or blue ginger, is authentic in this dish. It’s available from Asian stores or larger supermarkets, or use fresh ginger instead.


Quantity Ingredient
4 kaffir lime leaves
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 fresh red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
16 coriander leaves
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
4 stalks lemongrass
10cm galangal, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 litre coconut milk
2 handfuls oyster mushrooms
150g white cabbage, sliced
349g firm tofu, cut in quarters
2 limes, juiced
pinch sea salt
coriander leaves, to serve


  1. Remove the thick mid-rib from the kaffir lime leaves, roll them up tight and chop them very finely.
  2. Put the oil, chilli, coriander and tomatoes in 4 bowls and set aside. Crush the lemongrass and galangal, using the back of a knife, and put them in a large saucepan together with the coconut milk. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and add chopped lime leaves, mushrooms, cabbage, tofu, lime juice and salt. Let it gently simmer on low heat for 3–4 minutes. Taste and add more salt if needed.
  3. Pour the soup over the tomatoes and spices in the bowls, garnish with fresh coriander and serve.
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