This vegan coconut tofu soup recipe is inspired by the Thai soup, tom kha. While tom kha soup is totally delicious, it isn’t always vegan. It often has chicken or fish sauce in it.
The flavor in this soup is created by adding dulse seaweed and fake chicken broth. Some of the elements remain the same as traditional preparations. In the end, it is very similar to tom kha soup, tastes delicious, and is incredibly easy to make.
For this recipe, I used Maine Coast Dulse, which can be ordered online or found at natural foods stores around the US. When dulse is added to simmering soups, it adds to the flavor, especially if you want it to have a “from the sea” flavor. Adding a touch of dulse to this recipe made it possible to say “adios” to the fish sauce that is commonly used in traditional recipes for tom kha soup.
Galangal root is a staple in Thai cooking. While it looks similar to ginger and is in the same family as ginger, it does not taste like ginger. It’s a touch piney and quite citrusy. Some compare it to turmeric, because it’s a powerhouse root that’s loaded with beneficial properties. Other people say that you can use ginger as a substitute for galangal. If you have an Asian market or international grocer nearby, buy some galangal root (dried or fresh), while you’re picking up your lemongrass 🙂 It’s worth it!
If you prefer a spicier soup, add some Thai chili, or if you have some red curry paste on hand, add some!
Thai Coconut Tofu Soup
2 stalks of lemongrass, cleaned and chopped
2 inch piece of galangal root, chopped into quarters
1-2 tsp dried dulse seaweed
2 13.5 ounce cans of lite coconut milk
2 cups fake chicken broth
1 Tbsp reduced sodium soy sauce
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1 cup quartered whole white mushrooms
1 cup broccoli florets
2 carrots, sliced
3 scallions, chopped
14 ounce package of extra firm tofu, drained and cubed
1 roma tomato, small dice
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1. In a large heavy pot or dutch oven, add lemongrass, galangal root, dulse, coconut milk, and broth. Cover and simmer over low for 20 minutes.
2. Then, add all the remaining ingredients, except the tomatoes and cilantro. Simmer uncovered for ~10 minutes or until the carrots are cooked through.
3. Add the tomatoes and cilantro. Taste, and adjust seasonings, if needed (more soy sauce? more lime juice?). Fish out the lemongrass and galangal root before serving.