What is it?
Being a tropical country, the summer in Vietnam is especially hot and makes the people losing their appetite. That when Vietnamese people crave for a hot bowl of sour soup with seafood and vegetable. In Vietnam, the Northern and Southern have different way of cooking Sour Soup and the one from Southern is a bit more stand out. The Sour Soup from Southern (Canh Chua Nam Bộ) consists a contrasting in flavours (sour, sweet, and salty) and colours from different vegetables, seafood and spices. Just a bowl of Sour Soup can provide you all the needed nutrition.
How do you make it?
For Southern Sour Tamarind Soup, you can use one of all the wonderful abundance seafood such as catfish, snakehead, eel or shrimp. And about the vegetable, please prepare all the followings: tamarind, pineapple, tomatoes, okra, elephant ears stem, bean sprouts, green onions and sawtooth coriander. Clean thoroughly all those ingredients then slice them into pieces.
This recipe requires preparing tamarind pulp and it is most convenient to use wet seedless tamarind typically sold in 14 oz blocks. Combine the tamarind block in a cup of hot water in a ratio of 1:1 and stirring hard to blend them together. Then squeeze out the mixture to get the puree, toss away the membranes.
In large pot, add the tomatoes and sauté until soften, then add some salt, sugar, the seafood, pineapple, okra in to the pot and stir occasionally to make all ingredients to absorb the spice. At last, pour the tamarind pulp puree and water and bring to boil. When the bubbles appear, add the elephant ears stem, bean sprouts in and boil again. Before turn of the heat, slurp a scoop of soup and adjust the spice to suit your taste. Pour the soup onto a large bowl, sprinkle some chopped green onions and sawtooth coriander on top for the final touch!
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