Chicken in hot and sour coconut broth

Chicken in hot and sour coconut broth

[ezcol_1fifth]-[/ezcol_1fifth] [ezcol_3fifth]

I made this dish randomly and without aim a couple weeks ago and really enjoyed it, so I thought I’d share it.

Despite its gentle-mannered appearance, this soup will slap you out of your winter slumber if you so underestimate it.  Marinated and crispy-browned chickens in an aromatic Thai-style coconut broth that is almost too sour, almost too spicy, almost too salty that the corners of my jaws received it just as much as my tongue.  But only almost almost almost, because in the end I realized I couldn’t stop drinking it, this warming dish that sits right at the spearhead of all the sensations that our tastebuds could withstand and lingers there.

I know you’d love it, too.  That’s all.

[/ezcol_3fifth] [ezcol_1fifth_end][/ezcol_1fifth_end]

[ezcol_1third][/ezcol_1third] [ezcol_1third][/ezcol_1third] [ezcol_1third_end][/ezcol_1third_end]

[ezcol_1half][/ezcol_1half] [ezcol_1half_end][/ezcol_1half_end]

Chicken in hot and sour coconut broth

Serving Size: 4


  • 1.6 lbs (730 grams) bone-in chicken thighs, or breasts if preferred
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp grated ginger
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • BROTH:
  • 1 can (400 gams) coconut milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 3 1/2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 + 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 lemongrass, smashed and cut into segments
  • 20 grams (about 2 solid tbsp) galangal, sliced
  • 6 large or 10 small makrut/kaffir lime leaves
  • 3 red bird's eye chilis, finely diced
  • 1 small shallot, peeled and quartered
  • 3 thin slices of lemon


  1. Combine chicken thighs, 2 tbsp fish sauce, grated ginger, sea salt and ground black pepper in a shallow bowl, and let marinate for at least 1 hour or up to 6 hours. Heat a non-stick skillet (or the same pot you're going to cook the soup in if it is non-stick) with a little bit of vegetable oil over high heat, and brown the chickens skin-side down first until the skins are rendered, browned and crispy. Flip the chickens over and lightly brown the other side as well, then transfer to a plate, leaving the fat behind. The chicken will still be raw in the center but that's ok.
  2. In a pot, heat coconut milk, chicken stock, fish sauce and lemon juice, granulated sugar and ground black pepper over high heat until simmering. Add the chickens, all the juices, lemongrass, galangal, makrut lime leaves, bird's eye chilis, shallot and lemon slices. Keep the broth at a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Serve immediately.
  • Maureen Rose

    January 20, 2020 at 11:03 PM Reply

    Can you substitute dried galangal? If so how much would u use?

    • mandy@ladyandpups

      January 21, 2020 at 1:28 AM Reply

      Maureen, I would suspect that the flavor would be compromised with dried galangal though. Is you dried galangal in powder form?

  • m'liss

    January 21, 2020 at 5:12 AM Reply

    Your description is so good my mouth is watering. Can’t wait to try.

  • Eha

    January 21, 2020 at 12:00 PM Reply

    Subscribed to you awhile back. Something termed ‘The Australian Bushfires’ stopped my reading and cooking and appreciating and coming to say hello ! Just read your ‘about’ . . . uhuh ! Would love to come and learn . . . if that is OK with you and the pups . . . ? Love the sound of your coconut broth . . . shall taste your imagination as soon as I can . . . oh, we have been in a fair few places together, even if not at the same time. Shall send this to a few friends . . .

  • Peter Berglund

    January 21, 2020 at 4:40 PM Reply

    This looks like a really tasty heartwarming dish, nice work. I just received your cookbook from dear old Amazon, it’s my new favourite. I’m about to move house and as soon as I’m in my new place I plan to work my way through it, can’t wait. Carry on the great work!

  • V.

    January 24, 2020 at 5:43 PM Reply

    This looks quite delicious, but it also looks very similar Thaïland’s green curry (safe for the garlic).
    I am however surprised that you advise to cook the chicken skin-side down first. I always assumed this would cause the skin to shrivel down to a crumply mess, as demonstrated by this chef:

  • Chris from San Francisco

    January 28, 2020 at 12:48 AM Reply

    Note to US cooks — the cooking times might be a little short for our big honking chicken thighs; after ~8 min total browning (5+3) it still took nearly 15 minutes of simmering to cook the thighs all way way through. Not a huge issue but be aware.

    I used ginger instead of galangal and it was still good. I topped with some toasted chicken skin and raw shallot for crunch and bite, and would do that again.

    Brilliant, quick recipe — I have a feeling this is going to be in heavy rotation in my kitchen!

  • Yvonne Chan

    January 30, 2020 at 12:41 AM Reply

    OMG. Made this last night. It is exactly what you said it would be. Almost too salty, almost too sour, almost too rich, but you can’t stop eating it.
    love your blog, thank you for sharing your crazy wonderful ideas.

  • Harry

    February 21, 2020 at 5:13 AM Reply

    I couldn’t stop thinking about this recipe so I made a vegetarian/vegan version. I subbed the chicken with three globe eggplants (halved and scored, should have cooked more) and used a mix of miso/fermented tofu/seasoning sauce instead of the fish sauce (damn seafood allergies!) and served it with some rice noodles. It was everything I hoped for and will definitely make it again. Thanks for the great recipe!

  • Xuan Nguyen

    May 20, 2020 at 9:12 AM Reply

    I did try the recipe, and it turned out so amazing. I also added a cup of water cause I wanted to eat it with thin rice noodles. My boyfriend and I really enjoy the food

  • Jin

    November 13, 2021 at 11:22 AM Reply

    Actually cooking it skin side down releases all the chicken oil/ fat and makes everything else taste delicious as you saute everything else in it.

  • Herbert Fields

    May 23, 2023 at 11:12 AM Reply

    Because of how well you described it, my mouth is starting to water. I can’t wait to put it to use. funny shooter 2

Post a Comment