Vietnamese Fisherman's Soup


You can use any kind of seafood you like in this sweet-and-spicy soup, which is special enough for a dinner party.


  • ½ pound boneless, skinless salmon, cut into bite-size pieces

  • ¼ pound bay scallops, muscles removed

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 1 teaspoon ground-chile paste

  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic

  • 5 cups homemade or canned low-sodium chicken stock, skimmed of fat

  • 2 ripe tomatoes (1 pound), cored and cut into ½-inch dice

  • 2 cups diced fresh pineapple

  • ½ medium onion, sliced lengthwise ¼ inch thick

  • 2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce

  • ¼ cup sugar

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice

  • 3 scallions, white and light-green parts only, cut diagonally ¼ inch thick

  • 2 cups bean sprouts

  • 2 tablespoons chopped sweet basil

  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

  • 2 tablespoons Fried Shallots, optional


  1. Blanch salmon in boiling water for 10 to 20 seconds. Lift out; drain in a colander. Blanch scallops for 10 seconds; drain.

  2. Heat oil in a small stockpot over medium heat. Add chile paste and garlic. Cook until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Add stock, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; stir in salmon and scallops, tomatoes, pineapple, onions, fish sauce, sugar, salt, and lime juice. Cook just until seafood is cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in scallions, bean sprouts, basil, and cilantro. Divide among 8 soup bowls, garnish with Fried Shallots, if desired, and serve immediately.

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