vegetable oil, divided
3/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps sliced 1/4 inch
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
4 Thai chiles, minced
3 stalks of fresh lemongrass, inner bulbs only, thinly sliced
1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined, shells reserved
1 large onion, chopped
1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh ginger
1/4 cup Asian fish sauce
2 quarts fat-free chicken broth or homemade defatted broth
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup small basil leaves
In a large, deep skillet,
heat 1 teaspoon of the oil. Add the shiitake and season with salt and
pepper. Cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring a few times, until
tender, 5 minutes. Uncover and cook, stirring, until the shiitake are
golden, 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
Add the remaining 1 teaspoon of oil to the skillet. Add the chiles, lemongrass,
shrimp shells, onion and ginger and cook over moderate heat, stirring
occasionally, until the onion is softened and golden, about 7 minutes.
Add the fish sauce and stock and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate
heat for 10 minutes. Strain the shrimp broth into a large bowl.
Return the broth to the skillet; bring to a simmer over moderate heat.
Add the shrimp and shiitake and cook until the shrimp are pink and curled,
1 minute. Add the lime juice and season with salt and pepper. Ladle the
soup into bowls, garnish with the basil leaves and serve.