In the year 1898, the recipe for ‘Special Tom Yum Kung’ was recorded in the book “The Dictionary of Making Savory Foods like Westerners and Siamese”, but the recipes and methods were very different from the modern Tom Yum Goong that we all know and love. The modern Tom Yum Goong recipe is in fact closer to the ‘Kaeng Nok Mor’ and ‘Tom Yum Khmer’ recipes by Thanpuying Plean Passakornrawong in the book The Cook’s Cookbook (1908). It wasn’t until 1964 that a recipe similar to the modern incantation of Tom Yum Goong appeared in the book “Khao Savoey” by M.R. Kitinadda Kittiyakorn. The first ever recorded instance of Tom Yum Goong being eaten was at Klai Kangwon Palace at around this time.
Traditionally, Tom Yum Goong only came in a clear broth version, but Krit Luelamai, an archaeologist and culinary historian, once wrote an article describing how the creamier version of Tom Yum Goong was born in the reign of King Rama VI. Around that time, it was rumored that a newly opened Chinese eatery in Bangkok started putting milk in their Tom Yum soup to increased the concentration. However, this anecdote is just like an urban legend. There is no definitive evidence either.