Red Curry Squash Soup with Bok Choy and Pickled Mushrooms

Habiger's silky soup gets slight heat from red curry paste and sweetness from butternut squash. The bok choy and pickled mushrooms add crunch and tang, but the soup is also delicious on its own.

More Warming Soup Recipes

Recipe from Food & Wine Best New Chefs All-Star Cookbook

  • Active:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8
KEY: Soups & Stews, Dinner, Asian

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pickled mushrooms

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt    
  • 3/4 pound hon-shimeji (beech mushrooms), roots trimmed and mushrooms separated
  • 3 fresh kaffir lime leaves (see Note)
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 8 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • One 2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, tender inner bulb only, minced
  • 2 fresh kaffir lime leaves
  • 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2 -inch dice (about 6 cups)
  • 1/4 cup Thai red curry paste
  • 4 cups fish stock or bottled clam juice
  • One 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
bok choy
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil    
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 pounds baby bok choy, leaves sliced lengthwise
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

How to make this recipe

  1. Make the pickled mushrooms In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar with both vinegars, the salt and 1/2 cup of water. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat and add the mushrooms, kaffir lime leaves and thyme and let stand until cooled completely. Transfer to a jar, cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, make the soup In a large enameled cast-iron casserole, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to brown, about 8 minutes. Add the squash and red curry paste and cook, stirring, until the squash is coated and just starting to soften, about 10 minutes. Add the stock, coconut milk and 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the squash is very tender, about 25 minutes.
  3. In batches, carefully puree the soup in a blender and transfer to a heatproof bowl. Strain the soup through a fine sieve back into the casserole and bring just to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper and keep warm. 

  4. Prepare the bok choy In a large skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the garlic and ginger and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the bok choy and cook, tossing, until 
just wilted and crisp-tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Ladle the soup into shallow bowls, top with the bok choy and some of the pickled mushrooms and serve. 

Make Ahead

The pickled mushrooms can be refrigerated in the pickling liquid for up to 1 week. The soup can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.


Kaffir lime leaves are the fragrant leaves of kaffir limes, a fruit native to Indonesia, Thailand and other parts of Southeast Asia. They are available at Southeast Asian and some Asian markets and online at

Contributed By Photo © Chris Court

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1057387 recipes/red-curry-squash-soup-bok-choy-and-pickled-mushrooms 2016-01-08 Josh Habiger soups-and-stews|8|weeknight-dinner|asian recipes,red-curry-squash-soup-bok-choy-and-pickled-mushrooms 1057387