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Cuisine of Thailand

From Academic Kids

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Thai seafood curry

Thai cuisine is known for its blend of fundamental flavors in each dish -- hot (spicy), sour, sweet, salty and bitter. One of the important ingredients is nam pla (Thai น้ำปลา), a very aromatic and strong tasting fish sauce made from dried anchovies which have been fermented in brine.

Rice is a staple component of Thai cuisine, as it is of most south-east Asian cuisines. The highly-prized jasmine rice is indigenous to Thailand. Rice dishes are accompanied by highly aromatic curries, stir-fries and other dishes, incorporating large quantities of chillies, lime juice and lemon grass. Noodle is popular as well. Noodle usually comes in a one-dish, like Pad Thai.

Many Thai dishes use kaffir lime leaves (Thai ใบมะกรูด), usually fresh - its characteristic flavour appears in nearly every Thai soup (e.g., the hot and sour Tom yam), stir-fry or curry.

In Thai cuisine, kaffir lime is frequently combined with garlic, galangal, ginger and fingerroot, together with liberal amount of chillies, blended together to make curry paste. Fresh Thai basil is needed for the authentic fragrance. Other typical ingredients include the small green Thai eggplants, and coconut milk.

Thai food is traditionally eaten with a spoon and a fork, not with chopsticks.

Famous Thai dishes include:

  • Tom yam Gung (Thai ต้มยำกุ้ง) - hot & sour soup with shrimp
  • Tom yam gai (Thai ต้มยำไก่) - hot & sour soup with chicken
  • Tom kha gai (Thai ต้มข่าไก่) - hot sweet soup with chicken and coconut
  • Satay (Thai สะเต๊ะ) - grilled meat served with peanut sauce (originated in Indonesia)
  • Pad Thai (Thai ผัดไทย) - pan-fried rice noodles with various ingredients
  • Red curry (Gaeng Pet = 'hot curry') (Thai แกงเผ็ด) - made with dried red chillies
  • Green curry (Thai แกงเขียวหวาน) - sweet green curry, made with fresh green chillies and flavoured with cumin
  • Yellow (Massaman) curry (Thai แกงมัสมั่น)
  • Neua pad prik - Thai chili beef or Thai pepper beef
  • Som tam (Thai ส้มตำ) grated papaya salad. pounded with a mortar and pestle
  • Sticky rice (Thai ข้าวเหนียว)
  • Larb (Thai ลาบ) - various salads containing meat
  • Gai yang (Thai ไก่ย่าง) - marinated and grilled chicken

In addition, there is also a variation from northern part of Thailand which includes its own kinds of sauces, such as Nam Prik Nhum, and exotic foods, that include raw beef and deep fried larvae.

See also: cooking, cuisine


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