60 Thai Food to Saturate Your Taste Bud
Thai cuisine is the unique and national Thailand food. It is well known for its spiciness and strong aromatic components. It doesn’t matter what type of dish you order (meat, tofu, vegetarian or seafood) it will have at least three of the four fundamental taste senses. Many westerners think that Thai food is a mixture of different handy ingredients, but it isn’t about simplicity! The perfect juxtaposition of sweet, sour, salty and bitter that can please any stomach, from the youngest to the oldest, makes Thai cuisine distinctive and addictive. In order to introduce you in this magical and complex kitchen I’ve decided to write about 60 Thai foods that I love. Enjoy!
Som Tam is Thailand’s most beloved salad. This spicy salad made from shredded unripe papaya is translated as green papaya salad. There are many variations of this dish, such as Som Tam Boo – made with crab, or Som Tam Plah Lah – made with fermented fish sauce. The original dish starts with pounded garlic and chilies with mortar and pestle; all together form a krok. Separately tamarind juice, fish sauce, peanuts, dried shrimp, tomatoes, lime juice, sugar cane paste, string beans and green papaya are tossed in the krok and the salad is ready to be served with sticky rice.
Kanom Jeen is a traditional dish original from Thailand. Literally it represents fresh, soft and thin noodles made from fermented rice. Noodles are widely used in Yunnan, Cambodian and Vietnamese cuisines. The Thai noodles are prepared with such ingredients as long beans, pickled mustard greens, shredded cabbage and Thai basil leaves. Kanom Jeen is eaten with a variety of curries or just one curry and fresh, blanched and pickled vegetables. This dish can taste differently, but always very yummy, depending on the variety of the accompanying fresh vegetables. It can be served with Som Tam – the famous green papaya salad.
Guay Teow Lui Suan represents a Thai version of Vietnamese spring rolls, which is totally different. It is translated as wrapped flat noodles. These spring rolls are made by a flavored and unusual mixture of huge and thin rice noodles, ground pork, carrots and lettuce. You should know that pork can be replaced with minced meat, tuna, crab sticks, firm tofu, shredded chicken or beef. The filling is made by all the ingredients except noodles. They are used as wrappers for filling. This dish is very sophisticated. It is served hot and goes well with any kind of cold sauce.
If you like to eat pork dishes than you will love sai ooah. Northern Thai sausage is easy to prepare and goes very fast. It is spectacular how a mixture of a few simple ingredients leads to a mouthwatering result. This is a meat dish and it has a spicy taste and a wild flavor from garlic and lemongrass. This Thai sausage is so good, that Thai chefs decided to replace pork with local elk, deer, wild boar, or other natural meat in order to make it a Muslim dish too. It can be served with any other Thai dish!
Thai cuisine is quite spicy, sour, salty and sweet in the same dish and one delegate that represents it is Som Tam Ponlamai. This spicy fruit salad is made of diced into cubes tropical fruits such as papaya, pineapple, guavas, apple, pear, grapes, chopped spring onions, cilantro, prawns, garlic and chilies. The sweet dressing for it is made from lime juice and zest, fish sauce, sugar and chilies. Wait and give a taste to this thrill for your tongue before you will come to any conclusion. If you are an adventurer and an always-hungry person you will like this dish!
Yam kai dao is translated as fried egg salad. Deep freed chicken or duck eggs, wedges of tomato, garlic, coriander, onions, celery leaves, chilies and lime juice are lightly mixed in order to create this Thai salad. The final dish will be a little bit spicy as most of Thai dishes, but very yummy. The fact that it will be a little bit sour will help your stomach to digest it much better. This salad is served with a dressing made by fresh ingredients. It is recommended to adjust the taste by combining salad and dressing to suit your preferences.
There is one special Thai dish that combines the flavored duck meat, vegetables, rice and homemade ginger and onion sauce. This mixture has a name – Kao Na Phet. Duck’s meat is a little bit fattier then chicken one and its flavor is distinctive and original. Just imagine a plate with rice, then a few succulent and boneless small duck parts. This imaginable unfinished dish is already mouthwatering! Top it with steamed vegetables and a simple, but necessary duck soup (sauce). Vegetables are optional, but they give a wonderful aroma and taste to this dish. This Thai delicacy is a must-try!
Besides the fact that Kao Ka Moo is a very delicious traditional Thai dish it is also the Favorite one of Thailand’s Prime Minister – a celebrity chef. This information surely says a lot about this specialty. Its secret is the slowly manner of cooking. In order to prepare it chef has to boil pork for hours in sweet soy sauce with cinnamon and anise. The right piece of meat is very important. It should be pork shank, hock or a front leg; fresh, not smoked or cured. It is plated with rice, pickled vegetables, coriander, fresh garlic or red chilies.
Kao Mok Gai is a popular Thai-Muslim rice dish; a Thai version of chicken biryani. Kao means rice, Mok yellow and Gai chicken. It is a chicken-and-rice specialty that reflects Muslim, Indian and Thai cuisines. This dish takes time to make, so if you are not in the cooking-mood just make a reservation in a Thai restaurant and enjoy its mixture of flavor, color and taste. This food is cooked by Muslims on special occasions like weddings or during Ramadan. So eat it slowly, try to catch its special aroma and don’t hesitate to travel in Thailand while enjoying it!
Kao Moo Dang is also known as Thai grilled red pork with rice. Roast pork on rice is probably the most available dish on Thailand street stalls and eateries. This comfort food represents a plate of jasmine rice that is covered with thinly sliced barbequed pork, a few slices of Thai sausage and half of boiled egg. Optionally it has fresh cucumber and scallion. This dish is topped with red sauce and garnished on top with coriander leaves and green onions. The finished food is sweet and the best option for a late night dinner, because it is very light.
Fatty Cheong Roasted Meat at Moo Krop Nai Tai Restaurant
Kao Man Gai is another popular comfort food. This Thai version of Hainanese chicken is made of chopped boiled chicken onto a plate of steamed rice made from the fatty chicken stock. It is very important to make this dish with yellow bean sauce, that can’t be substituted, with squash and cucumber; all this mixed form the dipping sauce. As accompany the garlic chili vinaigrette is used; its incredible aroma and taste will blow each and every mind. This delicious food can be served with a light chicken soup, fried chicken – kao man gai tod or with salted pig’s blood.
If you are not familiar to the famous Thai cuisine, you should start with a light traditional fried rice meal such as Kkao Kluk Kaphi, that is quite hard to find, but worth! It represents fried rice with shrimp paste. Just imagine a plate with fried rice bed together with a fresh and yummy shrimp paste; already sounds delicious! This dish is topped by different fresh ingredients like shredded green mango, shallots, sweet fried pork, red onions, a fried egg and sour lime. This non-vegetarian dish is a must-try, especially in a place where chef makes a fresh shrimp paste.
If you are vey hungry and out of time the best meal for you will be Kao Niew Moo Yang. It represents a few pieces of grilled pork and sticky rice packed in little plastic bags. The most comfortable things about this dish is that it is easy to prepare, is offered everywhere in Asia and always fresh, because people love it. Kao Niew Moo Yang is a good and nice option for a family or friends picnics, as it is quick, easy, fresh, delicious, cheap and available. If you eat it straight from the bag you’ll have clean hands.
There is one very famous Thai noodles dish that is popular outside of Thailand. Pad Thai represent medium size soaked dried rice noodles stir fried with a few ingredients, such as shrimp, green onions, tofu, tamarind pulp, bean sprouts, garlic or shallots, chili flakes, vinegar, palm sugar, fish sauce and lime juice. Usually it is served with lime wedges and chopped roasted peanuts. The key to a perfect Pad Thai is the cooking, or better to say non-cooking method of the noodles, they must be chewy. Vegetarians shouldn’t worry because this dish has a very delicious and flavored vegetarian version.
Thip Samai Restaurant
Guya Teow Rhua is a well-known Thai dish that is translated as boat noodles. If you think this dish is plated as a boat you are not right. Its name has a few hundred years and comes from its serving manner – directly from the boats. This meat dish is made of sweet pork or beef blood broth with a choice of noodles, a few slices of meat and a few springs of morning glory. The small bowls tradition is kept in Thai restaurants, so if you order it you should order a few portions, as you will eat it fast.
Guya Teow Nuaa (Sen Lek) is a Thai noodle and meat soup. Sen lek represents medium size rice noodles. It is originally a beef noodle soup, but it is prepared also with pork or pork balls noodles. Guya Teow Nuaa is made of fresh broth that is boiled for hours, and then meat noodles, light bean sprouts and green morning glory are added. Soup is steamed in a boiling caldron before it is served – yummy lunch option. If you cook it you should know a Thai style secret – soak noodles in hot tap water and then rinse with cold one.
Guay Jab is a Thai soup that is a perfect option as a lunch starter. It is translated as flat rice noodle clear soup. Just imagine a mixture of a thick light brown and fatty broth, wide rice noodles, crispy pork skin, lungs, tongue, green onions and black paper. It is definitively not a meal for those who sit on a diet, but for healthy and open-minded people this is the perfect choice as it oils stomachs and gives a wonderful feeling of mind and body integrity. This soup is recommended by many worldwide famous chefs; a must-try Thai dish!
Goong ob woon sen represents baked prawns with bean thread noodles and soy sauce. This dish can be found in Thai restaurants as well as in Chinese; it has a Chinese name and Thai origin. A Chinese created it while he lived in Thailand. This delicate cooking can be found only in restaurants, no street vendor cook it! Its main ingredient is a large size Tiger shrimp or fresh water shrimp. Other ingredients are: bean noodles, ginger, coriander and white pepper. It is baked on a stove inside the clay pot and is served in traditional Chinese style clay pot.
Thai kitchen is full of many different meat, vegan, vegetarian and seafood dishes. Many of them can be served together, but the most common dish that can be served with any other food is Pad Mama. It can be served as breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack; easy and fast to cook and very yummy. Mama is the brand that has the monopoly on instant noodles in Thailand. These instant fried salty noodles can be cooked with an assortment of vegetables, meat and some extra salty seasoning. It’s very impressive how children and their parents crave this addictive local salty delicacy.
You will love Gaeng Keow Wan – the Thai green curry as it mixes the spiciness from the chilies and the sweetness from the coconut milk. This delicacy can be cooked in 15-20 minutes, so if you are very hungry or in a hurry order it in your favorite Thai restaurant. It can be really easy recreated, especially if you slice very thin the ingredients. This dish is made of natural products and it is suitable for vegetarians, vegans and for little kids as it is gluten free and spicy level can be adjusted! It can be served with jasmine rice.
Panang Gai also known as Phanaeng curry or Penang curry is a Thai red curry. As the name says it was firstly discovered and cooked in Penang, the most traditional Malaysian state. It should be prepared with chicken, because Gai means chicken. This meal can be adjusted for any stomach taste: if the final result isn’t salty enough then add more fish sauce, if too salty add more lime juice, and if it is too spicy then add more coconut milk or yogurt. The combination of fresh herbs, local spices and fragrant chicken makes this curry enjoyable and quite delicious.
Gai Pad Pongali also known as Yellow Chicken Egg Curry is a very delicious and easy to make Thai dish. You need only half an hour to cook it or to wait until chef will cook it and an entire life to remember its taste. So it will easily become your favorite meal. It is amazing how chicken, a few vegetables, yellow curry paste and one cracked egg will satisfy your stomach preferences. It is much easier to prepare the vegan version, and the taste is the same! This egg and chicken curry is served on top of boiled rice.
An egg is an egg; fried or in omelet, its taste will be the same. But the way Thais do their traditional deep fried omelet is very original. This is a comfort food that anyone can cook for breakfast, lunch or dinner. In order to prepare this Thai style dish you have to beat up eggs with a dash of fish and soy sauce and put this mixture in a pan. At the end add minced pork or any other meat. Top the omelet on a plate with rice and for a better taste eat it with prik (chili) sauce.
Thais have many pork dishes that, unfortunately, are non-Muslims, but if to replace the pork meat with any other than this dish will remain only non-vegetarian. Moo Dad Diew means deep fried sun dried fermented pork. It is as sophisticated as its name. Thais discovered this dish by trying to find the better method to store the pork longer. Because this meal combines the sweet and the salty flavors of the pork it is kid’s favorite one. It represents deep fried pieces of pork marinated in sweet soy sauce. It is served with Jim Jao (chili sauce) and sticky rice.
Yam Khor Moo Yang is a prized delicious meat salad. Moo Yang means grilled pork; Khor is translated as neck and Yam as salad. It is needless to say that pork neck is the most popular, pricey and favorite cut among the Thai people. It consists of the right combination of lean meat, muscle and fat in order to make any kitchen specialty flavored and unique! This salad is made of grilled and sliced pork meat, sweet onions, fiery chilies, parsley and lemon juice. It can be served as appetizer or as an entrée with sticky or steamed jasmine rice.
Gai Yang is a very delicate and original Thai specialty. Gai means chicken and Yang – grilled. You can think that grilled chicken is not a big deal to eat or to cook, but this is a really sophisticated dish. It is indeed easy to find, as many eateries and restaurants offer it, but the most succulent and correct cooked is not easy to find. Gai Yang represents a fresh small chicken cut along the belly, pegged with a stick to hold it, marinated and grilled over charcoal. This barbequed tasty chicken can be served with raw vegetables and spicy sauces.
Nam Tok Moo is a Thai dish that refers to as soup or to a meat salad. These are two different dishes that share one common ingredient – blood. Yes, you have seen that right – blood! In central Thailand nam tok moo is mainly a spicy soup made out of hot broth, noodles, bean sprouts, pork, vegetables, spices and pig’s blood. The meat salad is made out of rare grilled pork, dried chilies, mint, shallots, lime juice and the famous fish sauce. Its name literally means waterfall – while the meat is sliced its blood runs. It is consumed with sticky rice.
Larb Moo also known as Laab or Laap is a dish original from the North-East Thailand. This minced pork salad is perfect for a summer meal, as it is light, quick and very easy to make. It is made out of minced pork and liver, lime juice, fish sauce, mint leaves, onions and chilies. The mixture of sour, sweet, salty and bitter is quite addictive and surely catching. You can serve it as a healthy snack or a starter. It is traditionally eaten with sticky rice and som tum – spicy green papaya salad. Its vegetarian version is made with mushrooms.
If you are not familiar with Thai cuisine one of the best way to start eating this full of flavors kitchen is Pad Ga Pow Moo Kai Dow. It represents stir-fried chicken, pork, beef or minced meat in oil with garlic, a lot of chilies, green beans and the most important ingredient – basil. Holy basil gives a special flavor to this spicy dish. This dish is easy to recreate as it is very popular Thai one and is spread worldwide, like pizza from the Italian kitchen. It is served with steamed jasmine rice as one-dish meal for breakfast or lunch.
Gai Pad Met Ma Muang is a traditional Thai Cashew Chicken. Its main ingredient – cashew – is grown in Thailand, on the Phuket Island. This dish takes time to be cooked, but the final result is mouthwatering! It sounds easy to make: chicken, onions, dried chilies and cashew nuts are seared in a hot greased wok, but its preparing steps are delicate. The obligatory sauce is made of fish sauce, oyster sauce, some spices and palm sugar. The last ingredient will give a more succulent flavor to this dish, but it is replaceable with regular sugar. It is served with rice.
Plah Kah Pung Neung Manow is a Thai dish translated as steamed snapper fish in spicy lime juice. The whole snapper fish is prepared with lime juice and slices, grated green chili, cilantro and garlic. It is served in a metal fish shaped pan above a flame or bed of charcoal to keep it steaming. This sweet fish is prepared in a spicy soup; the mixture of sweet and spicy is definitively what you’ll need. In order to have a nicer amalgam of flavors it is recommended to be served with jasmine rice. This fish will melt in your mouth!
Besides the fact that Jim Jum is a very yummy Thai dish, its traditional way to be served is imposing: a small clay pot filled with broth over a bed of charcoal and a separate assortment of vegetables, meat and herbs. You will have to play chef and to make your own dinner. This dish is named after its preparing method. While the broth is boiling throw there vegetables (jum – to dip something in water), wait until it will boil again and add meat (jum – to dip something in sauce) with your chopstick and cook the meat for one minute.
There is one very popular Thai fish that is suitable for lunch and romantic dinner; especially if it comes with the most famous Thai salad – som tam and sticky rice. Plah Plow represents a plain grilled and salted fish that is stuffed with lime leaves, lemongrass and vegetables and rolled in a thick coat of salt. Is it grilled for only a few minutes to its juice perfection. This dish can’t be overcooked, but if it does it will transform to a perfect beer snack. The final result is soft, sweet and sweet white fish that is literally mouthwatering.
Panya Seafood Restaurant
You can have all Thai flavors and textures in a single simple dish – Yam Plah Duk Foo. This crispy fish salad with green mango is a favorite among Thais, and this is definitively a huge plus. The main ingredient of this dish is a tasty river fish – Plah Dok (catfish). Its texture is perfect for frying until crisp. Catfish, sour mango, sweet sugar, tart lime, red onions, fragile cilantro, shrimp, peanut sauce make Yam Plah Duk Foo the unique salad, served on a bed of lettuce. It is recommended to be eaten cold, in order to feel all it offers!
Gai Pad King literally means Thai ginger chicken. Ginger is the unbeatable ingredient of this dish. It is made of huge amounts of grated ginger, boneless chicken, a few different types of mushrooms, onions, chilies and oyster sauce. All these ingredients are fried together until they form a unique and full-Thai-flavors dish. This dish is very easy to recreate; just buy all the ingredients, spend an hour in your kitchen and amaze your family and friends with this tongue tingling meal. It can be served with hot rice, noodles and som tam or as a splendid item for a buffet.
Pad Pak Bung Nam Man Hoy is also known as “Morning Glory”. Morning because it is the best option for a copious and health breakfast and glory because it is made of fresh vegetables that will help you to have a health mind and body until your lunch time. This is one of those rare Thai vegetarian and vegan dishes. If you are vegetarian just order or cook it without trying to replace some ingredients. A huge amalgam of fresh vegetables is stir fried on high heat with garlic and chilies, so it will remain crispy and full of flavors!
Nam prik kaphi is the perfect Thai style sauce for seafood lovers. This shrimp paste also known as shrimp sauce can be made from small fish, small prawn or krill. Shrimp paste is made by mixing salt with fish. This composition is stored over night and drained and sun dried. This mixture is ground and packed in a container. The best and original paste should be dark deep purple and very dry and firm. It can be quite difficult to prepare; this is the reason why you should buy it. You can serve it with rice or with steamed vegetables.
Pad See Eiu represents a Chinese influenced Thai dish. The name is translated “fried (with) soy sauce” and it comes from the See Eiu soy sauce. It is made of dark and light soy sauces, garlic, river noodles (flat rice noodles), Chinese broccoli, chaotically added egg and any form of thinly sliced meat; usually pork, but also chicken, beef or mixed seafood. This dish is very healthy and energy-giving. It is students most preferred dish during the exams. Some people love to adjust this dish with sugar, chili flakes and a little vinegar to touch the perfect and unique taste.
Gaeng Tai Pla is a Thai dish translated as fish kidney curry. This is a comfort food original from southern Thailand. Gaeng means fish and Tai pla – a salty sauce made from fermented fish entrails. It represents the mixture of grilled fish and fish kidney. Bamboo shoots, eggplants, pea eggplants, chilies, carrots, long beans are added to make the stew hearty and to cut the fishy taste. This dish has a very intense and pungent aroma and a characteristic smell that only Thais appreciate. In general this curry is served with steamed rice and a separate plate with fresh vegetables.
Hor Mok Ma Prow Awn means seafood curry in coconut. The combination of salty and slightly sweet is a strong characteristic of Thai style cooking food. Hor mok is an assortment of mixed seafood – according to your preferences. This dish is made of cooking the seafood along with coconut cream and pieces of coconut flesh. This semi-dessert is loaded into a young coconut to be served. This delicate and natural serving style made a huge furor at its time, as well as today. It is better to be eaten in Thailand, as its originality won’t be influenced by other cuisines.
Cha Om Kai is translated as Thai acacia omelet. Cha Om – acacia plant – has a distinctive smell and taste that no animal, except human eat it. This plant has special and magical abilities, as it cures any stomach disease. It can’t be eaten uncooked, as its smell and taste are too unreal. This dish represents a fried mixture of tender acacia tree sprouts, a lot of chilies and eggs. It is very crispy and full of healthy flavors. Cha Om Kai is served with fermented shrimp paste chili sauce and usually it is an ingredient for gaeng som soup.
Hoy Tod is a Thai a-la-carte deep fried oyster omelet, but its aspect is more like a huge crunchy omelet filled with oysters. It is suitable for a copious breakfast, especially when you have a busy day. This street food will make you lick your fingers and plate, as the combination of plating, aromas and taste is perfect. Oyster, eggs and a few vegetables are mixed and made on a solid grill. It is served on a bed of bean sprouts and topped with cilantro and pepper. Sauce prik is also obligatory. For its better taste serve it at once.
There is one Thai dish that is prepared with sweet basil and every time you will get a whiff of sweet basil you will think about Hoy Lai Prik Pao. This chili fried clams dish is a very fast and uncomplicated dish to prepare. It is impressive how a delicious meal is prepared with a simple method and takes only a few minutes. If you want to play chef just do it and you will definitively succeed! Clams are stir fried with a big quantity of prik pao – Thai roasted chili shallot paste and sweet basil; the best light meal!
There is one very delicious Thai dish that is suitable for a Sunday afternoon barbeque with your family and friends. Goong Pao means grilled shrimp and goes best with garlic sauce. Just imagine a homey getaway from work, stress and daily little unpleasant thing: food, beer and good mood in the most comfortable company. Stir onions, chili and lime slices and pour over shrimp. Forget about it for 4 hours until it will be totally prepared to be grilled. Put shrimp over hot coals for about 5 minutes and turn them for another 2 minutes. Bon appétit and have fun!
Pumpkin is a rare ingredient in European, American, African and Australian kitchens. It’s full of nutrients and vitamins composition is appreciated in Asia. Thai chefs’ learned how to use pumpkin in some sweet-dessert dishes such as pumpkin coconut curry and also in salty rice ones – Fuktong Pad Kai. Stir fried pumpkin with egg is a great alternative to meat dishes and it can be breakfast, lunch or dinner. This food is made from green pumpkin, chilies, egg, garlic and white soy sauce. The main ingredient is cooked soft and the accompanying egg gives a visible richness and a tasteful flavor.
Thai cuisine is mainly made of meat recipes, but a famous local vegetarian chef took care to add a few vegetarian. In general tofu is not a popular ingredient in Thailand. It is used in some meat dishes and in vegan ones. Tao Hoo Song Kreung represents a mixture of rich tofu with vegetables. Each restaurant has its policy and its preferred amalgam of vegetables for this dish. A few vegetables, separately fried tofu and sometimes – minced pork are fried up. This dish can be a great start of a day as its quickly fried vegetables are almost row.
Thais like to start their days with meat dishes breakfasts. One light and quite energetic food is Galam Blee Pad Kai Sai Moo Saap. It is children’s preferred dish as it is full of vitamins, protein and no sugar and chili are added. Fried cabbage with pork and egg is a really simple, cheap and yummy food. If tying to say time is money in a culinary way then this dish is the perfect equivalent! It is made quickly by using cheap and usual ingredients. Vegetables, minced pork and egg are fried on a high flame with lava hot oil.
Pad Mala is a dish that is nutrient and very important for young organisms to grow healthy. Its most important ingredient – bitter melon helps not only body but also mind, by refreshing its memory. Stir fried bitter melon is for Thais like broccoli for Americans: moms try to force children to eat it! Unfortunately this main ingredient is neglected in western cuisines, so when you have the opportunity to eat it, do so and your mind and body will be pleased. If it is correctly cooked its texture will be soft and not mushy with a perfect fish sauce aroma.
Asians have many natural and healthy ingredients that Europeans and Americans don’t have. Pad Yord Mala is a simple to cook Thai dish that can easily become your favorite dish. Try to ask a European to cook melon leaves; you will be surprised by his reaction. But beside the fact that melon is very low in calories – only 17 calories per 100g it lowers blood sugar and it may be the first natural product that might be effective in treating HIV infections. Melon leaves and shoots are simply stir fried with the famous oyster sauce and the pinching tongue garlic.
It is not a secret that vegetables are full of vital elements that our body need daily! It is very important for your health to eat 5 raw or purely cooked fruits and vegetable every day. Yam Makua Yao is a Thai traditional dish that is able to please each stomach, from the youngest to the oldest! It represents roasted eggplant salad. Eggplant is grilled and tossed with spicy roasted chilies, lime juice, red onions, mint leaves, coriander and shallots. For a better taste fish sauce is also added. This dish can be a very good breakfast or a starter.
There are many aquatic creatures and plants that human eat. Most of them are yummy and healthy, especially if are cooked properly. Pad Pak Grachet or Pak Runawn is a vegetarian dish that is widely spread through Thailand. In English this dish is translated as water mimosa. Its main ingredient – pak grachet – is an aquatic vegetable or plant that grows near rice paddies. It is quite exacting to be peeled, as its skin is thick. This dish is vegetarian and very easy to be cooked: water mimosa is stir fried with chilies and garlic. Result – a quite chewy- yummy dish.
Pad Kee Sen Yai literally means drunken noodles. The provenience of its name is not known, but there are four different theories: using the rice wine as an ingredient; a drunk and hungry man cooked this dish with whatever available ingredients; someone has found a reminder in fridge to cook a side dish for an alcoholic evening; this dish is so spicy that a beer is needed to temper the heat. Its cooking technique is simple: wide rice noodles are stir fried with meat, chilies, basil and vegetables; without alcohol. This extremely taste dish is very salty and quite greasy.
Suki Haeng is a dry style dish that is made of the same ingredients as suki nam (soup). The original name is sukiyaki, but it is easier to say just suki. It represents a stir fried mixture of vegetables and meat or seafood. Some says that this food was introduced in Thai culinary by a Chinese immigrant. But as its name has Japanese origins it is obviously that it is a result of the Japanese-occupation. This yummy dish is made of wun sen – bean thread noodles, egg, Napa cabbage, green onions, morning glory and any kind of meat or seafood.
There are many nutritional and healthy foods, but the most important dish that can’t be disregarded from your daily menu is soup. Tom Yum Gung is a typical Thai soup that has been popularized around the world very quickly, especially during the 1997 Financial Crisis in Asia. Foreigners must know that “tom” means the boiling process, “yum” – local spicy and “gung” – shrimp: hot and sour prawn soup. The mixture of shrimp, lemongrass, kaffir lime g, galangal, lime juice and chilly will please any stomach. Its traditional herbal amalgam has special medical proprieties that cure any discomfort or disease.
Gaeng Som Pak Ruam is a vibrant sour, spicy and sweet mix vegetable soup with south Thailand origins. “Gaeng Som” is translated as sour and orange curry due to the light orange color given by fresh turmeric and “pak ruam” means green beans. This sour vegetable curry is a main dish, but it can also be served with a deep fried omelet. It is one of Thai non-coconut based curry dishes. This dish is very popular due its mild flavor of spices and also because one portion has only 120 calories and a full pocket of energy.
Gang Massaman is the most delicious Thai curry dish that can blow any foreigner mind! It was firstly cooked in the Southern Thailand with many dry spices brought by early Muslim traders. This is why Massaman word is always associated with Muslims. It comes from the Malay word “masam” which means sour. This delicious Thai dark red curry is most commonly made with beef, but also with duck, lamb, tofu or chicken and lately with non-Muslims ingredient – pork. This dish should be spicy, but not hot and served with steamed rice, roti and sometimes with a slide of achat.
As you know Thai cuisine is enough spicy and flavored, but there are some original dishes that are eatable for young children without changing their traditional recipes. Gang Jued is one of them. Gang means curry and jued – no taste: Thai clear, light and healthy soup. All ingredients are fresh, natural and fragrance, especially the coriander and celery herbs. It is also the most colorful Thai dish, as it is made of carrots, cabbages, onions, tofu, glass noodles, minced chicken or pork and fresh herbs; practically the entire rainbow. If you are ill Gang Jued is the most efficient drug!
Gang Som Plah Chon is a deep fried snake-head fish soup. Stock soup and curry pasta are boiled in a pan. Then the seasoned sneak-head fish with fish and soy sauces, palm sugar is added in the pan. It is amazing how krachai (lesser ginger) adjusts and gives the perfect aroma and taste to this dish! This fish soup combines sweet, sour and spicy flavors. It is served on a fish shaped metal pan. Some restaurants choose to top it with many vegetables and different herbs. These ingredients are never too much and will always accentuate fish importance and taste.
Kao Niew Ma Muang represents coconut milk on steamed sticky rice with ripe mangoes. This Thia sweet coconut rice is a very popular street food in Thailand. It is made by Thai ingredients and is good even for diabetics. Sweet ripe mango is an important ingredient, but it can be replaced with ripe peaces, papayas or durian. This desert is suitable for kids, as mango is full of vitamins, nutrients and phytochemicals. Just imagine a huge plate with small and glutinous rice bed topped with sliced sweet yellow mango and coconut cream syrup; quite simple, but the most nutrient dessert!
Sang Kaya Fug Tong is a very famous and unique Thai pumpkin dessert. It has only a few ingredients, but the sophisticated way of preparing it, the accorded time to cook it and the dedication means everything. The most complicated step is making the custard – a cooked mixture of coconut cream and egg yolk. It is not easy to find its right consistency – saucy, and it takes time to be prepared. A pumpkin is de-seeded and filled up with the ahead prepared custard. When the custard hardens, the pumpkin is sliced like a pizza and served with coconut custard topping.
As you probably have noted Thai food is cooked from fresh and local ingredients. There are some natural products that are used exclusively in Thai cuisine, such as water mimosa, melon leaves, etc. The generous use of fragrant herbs is welcomed in most of the dishes. The most interesting fact is that practically each food can be served with rice. It is cultivated in Southern Asia, so its wide usage is explainable. Beside the fact that rice is an important and cheap adapted ingredient it has a high nutritional importance. Many travelers remarked that original Thai cuisine from Thailand was a new experience for them, as Thai restaurants from Europe, America, even from Australia offer food with different taste. This fact is explained with the lack of original Thai ingredients in other countries. I really love Thai food and I recommend each of you to dare to try it in its home – Thailand. Bon appetit!