This Thai bamboo soup recipe is my Thai grandmother pride, she often makes keng no mai for breakfast or lunch. If you love traditional Thai food, this dish is perfect for you.
Keng no mai is a traditional Thai soup featuring fresh bamboo shoots, often enjoyed for breakfast or lunch. This authentic Thai dish originated in Isan, it's aromatic and flavorful, infused with many herbs and spices.
Bamboo soup is a taste of Northeastern Thai tradition, being served up at nearly every family gathering or special occasion. Prepared with local ingredients, this soup takes on different variations as you travel to different cities and even small rural towns.
For those looking for a taste of traditional Thai food, keng no mai offers flavors of authentic Isan cuisine.
Be warned, Isan food is incredibly flavorful. This recipe is not for those who are new to the world of Thai flavors.
Since soup is an affordable and nutritious meal, many Isan people enjoy soup for breakfast.
This recipe for Thai bamboo soup has the exact ingredients and instructions my grandmother likes to use. Rest assured, it doesn't get more authentic than this!
For the exact measurements, please scroll down to the recipe card at the end of this post.
Before making the bamboo soup, we will cook the bamboo shoots with sugar to remove their natural bitterness. If you're using canned bamboo shoots, you can skip this, instead you can simply wash them.
Leftover bamboo? Try this irresistible red curry recipe with bamboo shoots: gaeng daeng recipe.
Ladle the soup into individual bowls or place the soup pot onto the table, providing a bowl for each.
Sliced chilies: Place a small bowl of sliced chilies onto the table for those who like a spicy soup.
Sticky rice: My grandmother enjoys Thai soup with sticky rice. In fact, she eats everything with sticky rice, even fruits!
Let the leftover soup cool to room temperature. Transfer into airtight containers, glass containers are best. Store the soup in the refrigerator and consume within the next 3–4 days.
Freezing instructions: Transfer to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight or use the microwave.
Reheating instructions: Reheat in a pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Is this recipe gluten-free?
Is this recipe vegetarian?
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This is my grandmother's traditional recipe for Thai bamboo soup.
Heat a pot or large pan with water over medium heat. Add fresh bamboo shoots and white sugar, let boil for 20 minutes. Then drain water, leaving the bamboo shoots in the pot.
(If you're using canned bamboo shoots, you can skip this, instead simply wash them)
In a blender, mix glutinous rice, yanang, and water into a fine substance.
Use a mortar and pestle to pound the chilies.
Place the pot with bamboo shoots over medium heat, add the mixture of step 2 and crushed chilies. When boiling, add all sauces and seasonings while continuously stirring (fermented fish sauce, MSG, salt, flavor seasoning).
It's important to keep stirring at all times to prevent the glutinous rice from sticking to the pot, which will cause it to burn.
When the soup comes back to a boil, add sponge gourd, letting the soup boil for 2 minutes. Then add mushrooms, cook for another minute and add the rice paddy herbs. Remove from heat and serve immediately.
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.