Cambodian Sour Soup with Coconut Milk & Pineapple

Totally un-related to this post but I had just signed up with Twitter yesterday. If anybody is interested in my sudden burp, thoughts and rambling :) you can follow me.

Now, let’s get back to cooking. Here is another recipe that I adapt from The Elephant Walk Cookbook. I haven’t had this in a very long time, like more than 10 years! I think one of the reason was because I was too lazy to make my own Khmer Kroeung. :mrgreen: Thanks to my Mother I now have an endless supply of Khmer Kroeung.

This soup gives off a very fragrant aroma when cooked and very rich and flavorful. One might refer to this soup as Pineapple Curry due to the use of coconut milk. But the resulting taste is more on the sour and spicy side. The Kroeung along with the pungent pahok (pickle-fish) and shrimp paste helped balance the sweetness from the coconut milk and pineapple. Serve it up with lots of hot steamy rice. It is delicious! When the coconut milk was first combined with the Kroeung it reminded me of the broth used to ladle over Cambodian fresh noodles topped with assorted vegetables known as Num Baingjok.

Cambodian Sour Soup with Coconut Milk & Pineapple
(Somlaw Machew Ktiss Manoss) សម្លរម្ចូរខ្ទៈម្នាស់
adapt from The Elephant Walk Cookbook

1-1.5 lb pork (shoulder, butt, spare ribs), cut into fairly large chunks
1 cup coconut milk unsweetened
2 cups water
1 can (16 oz) pineapple chunks in natural juices
½ cup Khmer Kroeung (lemongrass paste)
1 teaspoon pahok (pickle-fish), grounded
1 teaspoon shrimp paste
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon tamarind soup base (powder)
4 kaffir lime leaves, torn
red chili to garnish (optional)

Heat a pot and add ½ cup coconut milk. Stir and cook until the oil starts to separate. Add Khmer Kroeung, stir often until the flavors are release. The aroma is heavenly!

Add meat along with sugar, fish sauce, shrimp paste and pahok. Cook for 5 minute.

Add the remainder coconut milk, water and tamarind soup base (powder). Give it a quick stir to incorporate them together and bring to a boil. Cover partly and simmer on medium for about 30-45 minutes until the meats are tender.

About 15 minutes before it is done add the pineapple chunks and torn kaffir lime leaves.

Garnish with chili and serve hot with lots of steamed rice.

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