In my family, a typical dinner often includes some sort of vegetable soup. Vietnamese cuisine veers toward numerous vegetable and herbs. Soup broths are typically made of bones, meat, seafood or vegetables. The bones based broths are for the long simmered noodles soups such as pho, hu tieu, and bun. The meat, seafood or vegetables are typically the basis for everyday home cooking. My mom would make this shrimp and daikon radish soup very quickly. We would have a nutritious and healthy dinner in no time. You can use this shrimp based broth with different types of vegetables.
½ lb of shrimp
1 large daikon radish
1-2 stalk of scallion
1 teaspoon of fish sauce
1 tablespoon of chicken bouillon powder
½ teaspoon of sugar
⅛ teaspoon of salt
⅛ teaspoon of pepper
¼ of a yellow onion, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon of chili powder (I use the Korean version as the chili is sweeter and the heat is not as intense as others. The goal is to add color and depth to the soup.)
Remove the shell from the shrimp.
Split the shrimp into ½ lengthwise without cutting it completely through. The goal is to have the shrimp still in tact. Remove the gut.
Rinse the shrimp thoroughly with water.
In a bowl, add the shrimp and season with 1 teaspoon of fish sauce, ½ teaspoon of sugar, ⅛ teaspoon of salt, ⅛ teaspoon of pepper and a tablespoon or small handful of onions.
Peel the daikon radish and cut into large pieces.
In a pot, add a few teaspoon of oil to coat the bottom of the pot and saute a tablespoon of onions until they turn golden brown.
Add ½ a teaspoon of chili powder to the oil and immediately add the seasoned shrimp.
Stir the shrimp so they do not stick to the pot and add 2 tablespoons of water to the pot.
Continue to stir to incorporate all of the ingredients. Once the shrimp is cooked, approximately 2-3 minutes, remove the shrimp from the pot and set aside.
Add 2 cups of water to the pot and 1 tablespoon of chicken bouillon powder to enhance the flavor. If you have chicken stock, you can substitute that with water and leave out the chicken bouillon powder.
Add the daikon radish and let them boil until they become translucent. This will take approximately 5-10 minutes.
Once the radish is cooked, add the shrimp back to the soup.
Turn off the heat and add some scallion for color. Serve with rice.
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