Sweet sour clam soup- Canh chua ngao

By Helen Le Published: September 29, 2017

  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 20 mins
  • Ready In: 40 mins

  • Yield: 2-3 Servings

This is one of most popular soups in Vietnam especially on extreme hot weather days when you just don’t feel like eating anything but drinking water and juices. What you can do bring back appetite for all family members on those days is to cook Canh Ngao chua or Sweet sour clam soup

  • Soak the clams in cold water with a few split chilis. You can also use water derived from washing rice (nuoc vo gao). This helps the clams to release the sands inside
  • Soak tamarind pulps in hot water and use a spoon to break up the chunk. Set aside.
  • Drain and cook the clams with water in a sauce pan. Bring to a rolling boil and as soon as all the clams open. Turn off heat and immediately remove the clams with a slotted spoon.Let the broth sit still for 10 minutes to settle the dregs. Remove the clam meat from the shells
  • Heat 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil in a large sauce pan. Add some minced garlic and fry till fragrant and slightly golden. Remove the fried garlic chips with a spoon and set aside in a bowl.
  • Add the tomato and stir for a couple of minutes until tender but still in shape. Extract the clear broth derived from cooking the clams earlier and discard the dregs settled at the bottom. Add 1 more cup of water and bring to a boil.
  • Add pineapple, starfruit and tofu. Add the tamarind water and discard the fibrous leftover. Season wit 1/3 tbsp salt, 1 tbsp chicken stock and 3-4 tbsp sugar
  • Add some of the chopped scallion and herbs, saving some for garnish. Take off heat and add the clam meat. Serve hot.


  • If clams are not easily accessible in your area, you can also use mussels. If not, thinly sliced beef can also be a good substitute.
    Món này nếu không có ngao thì bạn dùng chem chép hay thịt bò
  • You can serve with a bowl of hot steamed rice or ladle over some glass noodle or rice vermicelli. Very tasty soup, esp. to deal with the summer heat
    Bạn có thể ăn canh với cơm hoặc với bún/miến. Rất là ngon và dễ ăn, nhất là vào mùa hè vì có tác dụng giải nhiệt và đầy đủ dưỡng chất.