Canh Chua Tôm – Vietnamese Sour Soup with Prawn
Recipe Type: Soup
Prep Time: 
Cook Time: 
Total Time: 
Serves: 4
A refreshing soup hailing from the fertile rivers of the Mekong Delta
  • ¼ (4 fl oz) peanut oil
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1.5 (50 fl oz) litres water
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • cup (50g or 1.7 oz) palm sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 cup fresh pineapple, cut into small segments
  • 4 okra, cut at an angle
  • 300g (10 oz) fresh tiger prawns*
  • 2 elephant ear stems, cut finely at an angle**
  • 1 large tomato, cut into wedges
  • 1 cup of fresh bean sprouts
  • rice paddy herb, finely chopped
  • sawtooth coriander, finely chopped
  • more fish sauce
  • chopped chilli (optional)
  1. Place peanut oil and garlic in a small frying pan over medium heat. Once the garlic turns golden pour the oil into a small glass bowl. Allow to cool.
  2. Bring the water to a simmer in a saucepan. Add the tamarind paste and palm sugar. Stir gently until the paste and sugar dissolves and the stock comes to a boil. Add the pineapple and okra, allow to simmer for a minute. Add the prawns, once the soup comes back to a simmer take the pot off the heat and add the elephant ear stem and tomato.
  3. Place the bean sprouts in a large soup bowl. Gently pour the soup over the bean sprouts. Sprinkle some rice paddy herb and sawtooth herb over the soup. Also, pour a tablespoon of the garlic oil over the soup. Serve with side dish of fish sauce with chopped chilli (optional) and bowls of rice.
*replace the prawns with any fatty fish (catfish, silver perch or salmon) **if you are unable to find elephant ear you can substitute with a bunch of water spinach
Recipe by Honest Cooking at