Sunday, March 01, 2009

Vietnamese Tamarind Soup with Catfish, Pineapple, and Okra (Canh Chua Cá)

Here is another recipe as a part of my "Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24: Celebrating Mardi Gras, with Vietnamese Flair" post!

Vietnamese Tamarind Soup with Catfish, Pineapple, and Okra (Canh Chua Cá)
3 quarts of fish or shrimp stock
1 yellow onion, sliced
3-inch piece of ginger, bruised and scored
2 stalks of lemongrass, cut into 2 inch segments
5 cloves of garlic, smashed
1 lb boneless and skinless catfish filets, cut into 1 inch squares
1 can of pineapple chunks, with juice
2 large tomatoes, cored and segmented into wedges
3 stalks of celery, sliced on a bias
1/2 lb okra pods, with stems removed and roughly sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
1/4 lb of bean sprouts
1/2 cup of tamarind concentrate
1 tbsp of fish sauce
1/4 cup of sugar
salt, to taste

In a large stock pot, bring the stock, onion, ginger, lemongrass, and garlic to a boil. Skim off any foam or residue and simmer until the stock is reduced to approximately to half. Then, add the tamarind concentrate, fish sauce, sugar, pineapple and the reserved pineapple juice from the can, tomatoes, celery, and okra.

Bring the soup to a boil on a low simmer. Add the catfish and bring to a boil again. Add the bean sprouts just before serving.

I hope you enjoy this traditional Vietnamese recipe!


  1. i order this soup at viet restaurants all the time. thanks for the recipe

  2. I love Canh Chua. A local viet restuarant makes a spicy canh chua thai version with a kick of spice. Yummy!!!!! Thanks for the recipe I'll give it a try...been craving for this!

  3. My local vietnamese restaurant serves this recipe vegetarian, with vegetable stock and tofu in the appropriate places, and it tastes amazing! The presentation doesn't hurt: they bring it out to you in a large pot that has coals still burning in a receptacle in the center, making sure your meal is piping hot and warfting a beautiful aroma.

  4. This is a good common sense Blog. Very helpful to one who is just finding the resources about this part. It will certainly help educate me.

  5. What is the fish in the picture? Obvs not catfish...


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