Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Kha Gai)I'm a big fan of bold flavors like the ones found in Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines. Did you know that Western recipes tend to pair ingredients with similar flavor profiles, whereas Eastern recipes opt for opposite flavor compounds? The quintessential Thai ingredients include coconut milk, lemongrass, ginger, lime juice, chile paste, basil, and cilantro.

If you're nervous about using bold flavors in your cooking, start small with this simple soup from Sunset magazine. It takes just 20 minutes to throw together, and you'll love the spicy-sweet freshness of the broth and meaty goodness of the mushrooms and chicken. It's seriously good stuff, perfect for warming you to the bone on a chilly December evening. See how it's done: