Sunday, April 3, 2016

Curtis Stone's Thai Soup with Monchong and Shrimp Dumplings For Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays and IHCC

This week kicks off six months of cooking with Curtis Stone at I Heart Cooking Clubs. A fan since his Take Home Chef days on TLC, I thought I had not cooked with him before until I searched my blog and found his recipe for Lemon Puddings with Granny Smith Apple Compote (via Food & Wine Magazine) that I cooked a couple of years ago.  

This week we are saying "G'day Curtis!" and officially welcoming him to IHCC with any of his recipes we choose.

I like to welcome our new featured chefs with a bowl of soup--always figuring that if a chef makes a great bowl of soup, I will find plenty of other recipes in their répertoire to love and enjoy cooking along with them. While looking up Curtis Stone soup recipes, I came across his Thai Soup with Cod and Shrimp Dumplings from Great Thai food is a constant craving for me so I knew this was the Curtis dish I wanted to officially start with for our sixth month adventure.

I made a few small changes to the recipe, swapping out local leeks for the shallots and replacing the cod with some local monchong (aka deep sea or sickle pomfret), a rich but delicate slightly pinkish fish. I also added some kaffir lime leaves and used Thai basil and I added some cilantro to my dumplings so they would have some pretty green specks in them. My changes are in red below.  

Thai Soup with Mahi Mahi and Shrimp Dumplings
Slightly Adapted from Curtis Stone via
(Serves 4)

2 (13.5 oz) cans unsweetened coconut milk (I used 1 can lite, 1 regular)
6 small shallots, sliced (about 2 cups) (I used 2 medium leeks)
6 cloves garlic, sliced
2 stalks lemongrass, cut crosswise into 3 pieces

(I added 3 fresh kaffir lime leaves, slightly torn)
2 serrano peppers, sliced
4-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
2 Tbsp fish sauce
Finely grated zest of 2 limes

(I added one small pinch of coconut sugar)
1/2 cup loosely packed basil, roughly chopped (I used Thai basil)

1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro, roughly chopped
2 limes, cut into wedges, for serving

6 ounces skinless cod, roughly chopped (I used monchong)
1/2 lb pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 large egg
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp grated ginger (I used 2 tsp)

(I added 1 heaping Tbsp of minced fresh cilantro)

To make soup: In a large, heavy saucepan, combine coconut milk, 3 cups water, shallots, garlic, lemongrass (kaffir lime leaves), serrano peppers, and ginger and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer gently 5 minutes to infuse flavors. Remove pan from heat and stir in fish sauce and lime zest. Cover and steep 10 minutes. Pour soup through a fine-mesh strainer and into a saucepan, discarding solids. Cover and set aside. 

To make dumplings: In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse fish until it begins to flake apart. Add shrimp, egg, fish sauce, (cilantro) and ginger and continue to pulse until shrimp are coarsely chopped and cod has formed a coarse paste. Using moistened hands, form fish mixture into about 32 balls (about 2 tsps each).

Bring soup to a simmer over high heat, then reduce heat to low. Drop cod dumplings into soup and cook, turning a few times, just until dumplings are cooked through and shrimp flecks in dumplings turn pink, about 7 minutes. Ladle soup and dumplings into shallow bowls. Sprinkle with basil and cilantro. Serve with lime wedges.

Notes/Results: Great flavors and tender little dumplings, this is a tasty bowl of soup. There is a good combination of salty, savory, and tangy flavors, and a nice level of heat that warms the back of the throat. Inspired by Diana Henry's Eastern Broth recipe suggestion to add sweetness to balance the flavors, I added a tiny pinch of coconut sugar and it did add balance to the dish. I also spiced up my dumplings with some extra ginger and a bit of cilantro which I liked--especially since they are the centerpiece of the soup. As written, the recipe doesn't include vegetables or greens but they would be a nice addition for color and extra nutrients. I might add baby spinach, and perhaps some red pepper, carrot or turnip noodles and maybe some oyster mushrooms. But, even with no veggies, it is a rich and delicious soup. It goes together surprisingly easily--the meatballs are the fussiest part and if you keep your hands moist, they are simple to put together fairly quickly while the soup steeps. I would definitely make it again.

I will be linking this post up with the G'day Curtis! post at I Heart Cooking Clubs when it goes live tomorrow. You can see what recipes everyone made to welcome Curtis Stone to IHCC by checking out the picture links on the post.

Want to cook along with Curtis? Come join us! 


Here's a recap of the delicious dishes from last week's Souper (Soup, Salad, & Sammie) Sundays roundup. Yep, if you hadn't noticed, Souper Sundays is back with a new format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads or sandwiches and then a recap of (some, OK usually all of...) the entries the following week. 

(If you are not familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.)

Debra of Elliot's Eats brought a wonderfully satisfying Unprejudiced Palate Italian Soup, inspired by our recent Cook the Books selection: The Unprejudiced Palate by Angelo M. Pellegrini. Debra says, "Would Mr. Pelligrini have approved of this soup that borrows his book’s title? I did not forage for the mushrooms or pluck the carrots from the garden; I did, however, clip the thyme and rosemary from our herb plot. And, this made a big pot, perfect for those impromptu guests that seemed to always be on his doorstep."

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor shared a crisp slaw and says, "Doug grills the very best wings, crispy skin yet retaining moistness. Whenever he grills wings I make Nigella Lawson’s version of Cole Slaw. ... These are a natural together and the slaw is so easy to prepare. I don’t think I have ever had buttermilk in the house when I undertake the slaw process but no worries – just add a few teaspoons of white vinegar to a ¼ cup of milk. After it sits it’s remarkably thick, you’d never know it wasn’t true buttermilk, unless you are a buttermilk connoisseur."

Joyce of Joy 'N' Escapade adapted an Ellie Krieger classic recipe, making it her own by adding beetroot. She says, "I have always wanted to make Ellie's Nutty Sweet Potato Soup. Today's just the right day to do so, with the addition of beetroot." She also noted that "sour cream adds a different flavor dimension" to this now gorgeously scarlet-hued Nutty Beetroot & Sweet Potato Soup.

Joyce of Kitchen Flavours tried and loved Nigella Lawson's Quick Chili and says, "Just as it's name, this is a quick chili to make. It does not take long to cook, unlike the usual chili that is usually braised for 2 hours or more. This recipe is from Nigella's book, "Nigella Express", so that explains why this is cooked in an "express" way! It takes only about 40 minutes to cook, from start to finish. ...  A new favourite with my family. One that I would gladly cook again."

Thanks to everyone who linked up this past week!

If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:
  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month but we'll take older posts too.) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you.
On your entry post (on your blog):
  • please mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post.
  • you are welcome to add the wonderful Souper Sundays logo (created by Ivy at Kopiaste) to your post and/or blog (optional).

Have a happy, healthy week!


  1. You were ambitious this week. Great soup.........I want some.

  2. It was delicious Tina--and the dumplings are surprisingly easy to put together, so semi-ambitious maybe! ;-)

  3. I'm not a fan of fishy foods, but it looks so good I'd be willing to give it a try.

  4. I love the local twist you put on this using the monchong. This looks like one of those soups that is satisfying without weighing you down. Love those tasty little dumplings!

    Plus Tina has me craving coleslaw, and barbecue and all things summer:)

  5. Welcoming a new featured chef with a bowl of soup sounds like a great idea. It is raining in California today so I may have to get a pot of soup on. Glad it was a hit for you.

  6. What a wonderful combination of ingredients...the flavour must have been fantastic.

  7. These ingredients scream Thai loudly. I could taste the heat that comforts the back of my throat. A bright and delicious soup.

  8. This soup has so many flavours that I love! The idea of the dumplings simmered in that great coconut base is stellar! Thai food is not super popular here in my rural backwater, so finding good Thai recipes helps SB and I get our 'Asian fix' when we get the hankering for some good Thai. I have bookmarked this recipe!

  9. I agree, a bowl of soup is a nice welcome to a new featured Chef, this looks amazing.

  10. I learn a new word, monchong. It's so hot now at where I am but a bowl of heaty soup is still very much welcomed! :)

  11. Adding kaffir lime leaves sounds so aromatic, it is one of my favourite ingredient in Asian dishes. The changes you've made by adding the fresh herbs are a plus in my books. Your soup looks delicious and I can see why you would want to cook this again!


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