2 quarts of water
2 tbsp sliced, peeled ginger
1 red chilli pepper, sliced and seedless
2 tbsp fish sauce
2-3 stalks of lemongrass, chopped into pieces to fit your pot (easy to remove)
2 tsp sugar
5 shiitakes, sliced
1 lb raw shrimp, peeled
3 scallions, chopped into 1/2 lengths
1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
Place chicken in a pot with 1 of the lemongrass stalks and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes removing anything that floats to the top of the stock.
Add the rest of the lemongrass, ginger (in a sash) and chilli. Let simmer another 15 minutes. Remove the chicken to cool.
Keep going with the stock, adding fish sauce, sugar and mushrooms. Cook for 2-3 minutes and add your shrimp. Watch your soup, as soon as shrimp are opaque, remove the pot from the stove. Remove the lemongrass and the sash of ginger from the soup. Debone and chop up your chicken into bite sized pieces and add back to the soup. Season while still hot with scallions, lime juice and cilantro. Taste to see if more salt is needed or more spice. I usually just add a bit of sriracha or chilli oil at the end if the soup needs more kick.