1. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot. Remove from heat, add vermicelli, and let sit, stirring occasionally, until vermicelli are fully tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain, rinse with cold water, drain again, and distribute evenly among large soup bowls.
2. Place lemon grass, scallion whites, lime leaves, whole Thai chile, and galangal on cutting board and lightly smash with meat pounder or bottom of small skillet until mixture is moist and very fragrant. Transfer lemon grass mixture to Dutch oven. Add broth and sugar and bring to boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Using slotted spoon, remove solids from pot and discard.
3. Add mushrooms, fish sauce, scallion greens, and sliced Thai chile and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in shrimp. Cover and let sit off heat until shrimp are opaque and cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and lime juice. Season with extra sugar, extra fish sauce, and extra lime juice to taste.
4. Ladle soup into bowls of noodles; sprinkle with cilantro and Thai basil, if using. Serve, drizzled with Thai Chile Jam, if using, and passing lime wedges and extra sliced Thai chiles, if using, separately.
Here's how we cook rice vermicelli that is destined for a soup bowl: Just boil water, add the noodles, and turn off the heat, stirring the noodles once or twice as they soak. The noodles are done when they're fully tender but not mushy; just taste one to check. Rinse the noodles with cold water to remove any starchy film and prevent clumping.
Whole shrimp are traditional in this soup, but you can halve them crosswise before cooking to make them easier to eat. If galangal is unavailable, substitute fresh ginger. Makrut lime leaves (sometimes sold as kaffir lime leaves) add a lot to this soup. If you can't find them, substitute three 3-inch strips each of lemon zest and lime zest. We prefer vermicelli made from 100 percent rice flour to varieties that include a secondary starch such as cornstarch. If you can find only the latter, soak them longer—up to 15 minutes.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (2802g)|
|Recipe Makes: 4 Servings|
|Calories from Fat: 3342 (60%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 371.4g||495 %|
|Saturated Fat 106.1g||531 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 153.4g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 79.9g|
|Cholesterol 2061.1mg||634 %|
|Sodium 3905.3mg||135 %|
|Potassium 5412.6mg||142 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 40.6g||12 %|
|Dietary Fiber 5.4g||22 %|
|Sugars, other 35.2g|
|Protein 484.4g||692 %|
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Calories per serving: 5557
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