food, Recipes

hot and sour prawn broth

Sean Calitz


3T rice vinegar (or white wine vinegar)

750ml chicken or vegetable stock

500ml water

300g peeled prawns

½T fish sauce

1T soy sauce

1T demerara sugar

fresh lime juice to taste

1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, finely sliced

1 red chilli, finely chopped,

3 spring onions, chopped

250g vermicelli

large handful fresh coriander


Place the vinegar, stock and water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Immediately reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and add the prawns, simmering until just cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the fish and soy sauces, demerara sugar and lime juice to the cooking liquid, adjusting the seasoning according to your taste – add soy sauce for a saltier broth or lime juice for a more sour flavour.

Add the ginger and chilli, and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for about 15 minutes. Add the spring onions and vermicelli about five minutes before serving. Return the prawns to the soup and garnish with fresh coriander.


Originally published in HL May 2014