Healthy Coconut Curry Soup
TIPS: here are some of my tips that go along with this recipe....
If you can't find reduced fat coconut milk, you can use half the portion of regular fat coconut milk and substitute the other half with water (or you can substitute with boxed coconut milk to amp up the creaminess)! This has the same effect as using the reduced fat coconut milk.
When you open the canned coconut milk, there will be a thick film on the top of the can...this is coconut cream! This adds creaminess and flavor to the dish, but it also adds fat and calories. So what I like to do is remove the film and place it in a side dish, then use the liquid underneath in the soup and add 2 Tbs of the coconut cream to the soup as well (instead of the entire portion of the coconut cream). This helps to cut the fat and calories down while still maintaining that creamy coconut curry flavor!
You can modify this recipe based on what you have on hand or what you prefer! You can use chicken instead of shrimp or tofu, you can use any vegetables you would like (carrots, cabbage, asparagus, and more).
Make sure to get the low sodium broth! I always get low sodium because I like to salt the soup myself and have control over the sodium that is in the recipe.
4 Cups of broth (one large carton); I use vegetable broth but you can use chicken broth, fish broth, or even bone broth,
1 Cup of water,
1 can of reduced fat coconut milk, about 14 Fl oz (see "Tips" above for a few hacks with this ingredient),
2 Tbs red curry paste,
1 Tbs coconut oil,
1 lb of shrimp, peeled/de-veined and washed; I use small shrimp because I prefer to have the protein in bite sized in the soup (also you can use any protein you want, such as chicken, beef, fish and more),
1 container of extra firm tofu, diced into 1/2" cubes (also optional but I personally love this in the soup)
1/2 large white onion, minced (tiny pieces),
2 cloves garlic, minced (tiny pieces),
1 nub of ginger (about a square inch in size), peeled and grated (or chopped up very finely),
1 red bell pepper,
2 scallion stalks (optional to garnish),
1-2 Chili peppers (optional if you like spice but I think this makes the dish special, 1 chili pepper brings a very mild heat)
Heat a large sauce pan (soup pot) on medium heat and grease the pan with coconut oil,
Add to the pot your finely minced onion and allow the onion to cook for 2 minutes, then add your finely minced garlic and ginger,
Once the onion, garlic and ginger are translucent and starting to become soft, add to the pot your red curry paste and mix until everything is fully coated,
Add to the pot your broth of choice, coconut milk and your water, mix to combine and then allow the mixture to sit until the liquid reaches a low boil,
While the liquid is heating, slice your bell pepper into strips (I prefer thin strips but you can do whatever shape you prefer); Slice your scallions; and, if you are using chili peppers, slice your chili peppers very thinly (TIP: be very careful when working with peppers, be sure to wash your hands after handling the peppers and be sure not to touch your eyes after handling them),
Once the liquid in the pot reaches a low boil, add your cubed tofu and your shrimp to the pot; If you are using chili peppers, add the chili peppers to the liquid as well,
Allow the water to come back to a boil and allow it to stay at a low boil for 8-10 minutes or until the shrimp are no longer translucent,
Once the shrimp have cooked through, add the sliced peppers to the pot (I personally like the crunch of the peppers so I don't add them in until the end, but if you prefer them to cook a little you can add them in at the same time you add in the shrimp and tofu),
Plate your soup, garnish with scallions and a squeeze of fresh lime juice, and ENJOY!