Hot and Sour Seafood Salad

Yum Talay


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes

    4 to 6

    servings as part of multi-dish meal

Appears in

Southeast Asian Flavors: Adventures in Cooking the Foods of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia & Singapore

Southeast Asian Flavors

By Robert Danhi

Published 2008

  • About

Supple pieces of squid intermingle with sharp slivers of shallot in this pungent, spicy, mint- and cilantro-infused warm salad. This dish is nicely spicy, so keep a supply of cold Thai Singha beer on hand. The type of seafood you can use for this dish is very flexible. Although I call for a combination of shrimp and squid here, mussels, scallops, and lobsters are all welcome. For the most brilliant look and flavor, cook the seafood right before serving and toss it quickly with the dressing. Seafood is so tender and inviting when it’s slightly warm. You can buy the Thai Roasted Chili Jam (Nahm Prik Pow) if you wish. It’s sometimes labeled, “Chili Paste with Soybean Oil.”


  • 1 lb. (454 g.) Small shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 1 stalks Lemongrass, trimmed and sliced very thin, about 1/16 inch (.1 cm.)
  • 2 to 3 Fresh Thai bird chilies, sliced very thinly, about inch (0.3 cm. ) thick
  • 2 tsp. Minced garlic
  • 3 Tbsp. Lime juice
  • 2 tsp. Thai Roasted Chili Jam (nahm prik pow) or store bought
  • 1 Tbsp. Fish sauce (nahm pla)
  • 2 Tbsp. Light brown palm sugar
  • ½ lb. (227 g.) Squid pieces, bodies cut into ¼-inch (0.6 cm.) rings and tentacle clusters cut into bite size pieces
  • 2 medium Shallots, thinly sliced, about inch (0.3 cm.) thick
  • 1 medium Cucumber, Kirby variety preferred, cut in half lengthwise then thinly sliced, about inch (0.3 cm.) thick
  • 8 medium Cherry tomatoes, cut in halves
  • 2 Tbsp. Roughly chopped cilantro, leave and tender stems
  • 2 Tbsp. Roughly chopped mint leaves


  1. Massage salt into the shrimp; marinate 15 minutes. Rinse well.
  2. Meanwhile, in large bowl, combine lemongrass, chilies, garlic, lime juice, roasted chili jam, fish sauce, and palm sugar to make dressing; stir until sugar is dissolved.
  3. Bring 6 cups water to a boil in large saucepan. Add shrimp, stir well, and remove from heat. Stir occasionally until shrimp are almost cooked through, about 3 minutes (they should be shaped like “C”s, not like “O”s). Add squid, and allow them to cook in the let residual heat, about 10 seconds. Drain. Combine seafood with dressing in bowl. Add shallots, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, cilantro, and mint; gently toss to coat.
  4. Taste; adjust seasoning with lime juice, fish sauce, and palm sugar. Serve immediately.