Winter, Light Meals, Soup

Thai Green Goddess Soup with Crispy Tofu Croutons

This is exactly what you need to feed yourself on a gloomy winter's weekday: immunity-boosting, vibrant and fresh, it's warm with green chillis and fragrant with ginger, lemongrass and coriander, as well as being stuffed to the brim with fresh greens. If you don't have all the spices listed to hand, a tablespoon of Thai green chilli paste makes a great subsitute.

Here, I've used crispy tofu to top the soup, which gives it some added protein and a lovely crunch. Your favourite seeds or chopped nuts, such as raw almonds or cashews, would also make a lovely topping. Any leftover soup will store well in a airtight contain for three days.



For the soup

2 tbsp light oil, such as groundnut

2 banana shallots, finely chopped

2-3 fresh makrut lime leaves, finely sliced, or dried leaves, crushed (optional)

1 lemongrass stalk, bottom ¼ only, bashed with the flat of a knife

3 fat cloves garlic, grated

1 fat thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated

1-2 green chillis, deseeded and finely chopped

1 x 400ml tin full-fat coconut milk

400ml vegetable stock

400g tenderstem or regular broccoli

6 pellets frozen spinach

Small handful fresh coriander

Juice of ½ lime

For the tofu

1 heaped tsp cornflour

½ tsp sea salt

Grinding of black pepper

280g extra firm tofu, diced

2 tbsp light oil, such as groundnut

To serve

Coconut or plant-based cream

Small handful fresh coriander, leaves picked

Green chillis, sliced

Sesame seeds

Lime wedges


  1. Heat the oil in a large, deep-sided saucepan. Add the shallots, lime leaves and lemongrass, and cook over a medium-low heat until the aromatics are fragrant and the shallots are soft and translucent.
  2. Add the garlic, ginger and green chillis, stir to combine, and cook for a further 1-2 mins. Add the coconut milk and stock, bring to a boil, and reduce to a low simmer.
  3. While the soup bubbles away, fill a large bowl with ice and water. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, and cook the broccoli for about 4 mins. Drain, then immediately plunge into the ice-cold water.
  4. Add the spinach to the soup and allow it to defrost in the broth. Once it's softened, remove the lemongrass stalk from the pot, add the broccoli and coriander, and use a blender to whizz the soup into silky smoothness.
  5. Return the soup to the pan, add the lime juice, a pinch of salt, and a good grinding of black pepper. Check the seasoning, and adjust to taste. Keep the soup warm while you make your tofu croutons.
  6. Mix the cornflour, salt and pepper together in a bowl, add the cubed tofu, and toss to coat.
  7. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan over a medium heat. Add the tofu and fry, stirring frequently, until crispy on all sides – this should take about 4-5 mins.
  8. Divide the soup between 6 bowls, and top with your tofu croutons, a drizzle of coconut cream, and a scattering of coriander leaves, green chillies, and sesame seeds. Serve with a wedge of lime on the side.

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