When I was growing up, the smell of fragrant herbs and spices often filled our home in the wintertime as my mother would saute garlic and curry paste to make her favorite soup, khaub poob. This traditional Lao soup made of spicy red curry and coconut milk was one of many dishes adopted during the HMoob Diaspora. Several years ago, my mother taught me a simplified version of her recipe that cuts down on cooking time and eliminates a number of ingredients while still packing a punch. It’s not the same one I grew up eating but is just as full of flavor and love. –Yia Lor


KHAUB POOB (Red Curry Noodle Soup)

Serves 4-6

  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 1 4 oz. can of red curry paste
  • 1 4 oz. can of namya curry paste (omit if you can’t find it)
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, deboned and shredded
  • 1-2 cans coconut milk
  • 4 quarts water
  • 2 bouillon cubes, chicken or veggie
  • 2 cups bamboo shoots, thinly sliced
  • 2 14-oz. packages rice vermicelli noodles
  • Salt and fish sauce to taste
  • Garnishes: Chopped green onion, Shredded cabbage, Chopped cilantro, Fried chili in oil, Lime wedges, Basil, Mint


In a large pot, fry garlic in oil over medium heat for 1-2 minutes until slightly brown. Add curry pastes and stir for another minute. Then add chicken and stir until the chicken is well coated. Stir in the coconut milk.

Add water, bouillon cubes, and bamboo shoots. Bring the soup to a rolling boil. Then turn the heat down and simmer for about 20-30 minutes. The longer you reduce the broth, the thicker it will get. Add salt and fish sauce to taste.

While the soup simmers, prepare the noodles according to package directions. Be sure to stir the noodles when boiling so they don’t stick!

To serve, divide rice vermicelli noodles into bowls. Ladle with soup and add garnishes to your liking. Enjoy!

Not Enough Time To Cook?
Grab a Bowl From One of These Local Eateries

Egg Roll Plus • 1611 Bellinger St., Eau Claire • (715) 832-6125  •  facebook.com/EggRollPlus

Rice Palace • 210 S. Barstow St., Eau Claire • (715) 514-0460

Thai Orchid • 203 N. Barstow St., Eau Claire • (715) 514-2790  • facebook.com/ThaiOrchidEauClaire

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