Progressive Christmas Tea Party: Coconut Soup with Shrimp and Mushrooms

This is a very simple soup to prepare. Finding the ingredients might be the only difficulty. But remember, this is for a special Christmas tea so a trip to the specialty food store or Asian market isn’t out of line. Your guests will love this soup. It is one of my favorites.

3 cups chicken broth
4 kaffir lime leaves, cut into thin strands
A 3-inch length of lemongrass, finely chopped OR zest of ½ lemon, julienned
2 1/8-inch slices of fresh ginger
¼ cup fish sauce
½ cup fresh lemon or lime juice
3 jalapeno chilies, seeds removed, finely chopped
1 cup peeled shrimp
1 cup shiitake mushrooms, thickly sliced
1 ½ cups coconut milk
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro

Combine the all ingredients except cilantro. Bring to a slow simmer. Simmer long enough to cook the shrimp. Season with salt and top with cilantro.