Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Victuals

     This is the first of what I assume will be many posts about Thai food. I love to cook! I love food! However, I am poorly educated when it comes to Thai food and its preparation. So, I propose that you learn with me.

     Unfortunately, the only real exposure I’ve had to genuine Thai dishes has been in a restaurant wherein someone else has done the cooking. I began searching for recipes and various ways to prepare the local dishes. And the instant I started reading the ingredients from several common dishes it was apparent that I’m going to enjoy cooking most of them. This site will be extremely helpful both now and while I'm there. If you'd like to cook along with me I suggest looking at some of the recipes and testing your palette along with me.
     Since Bangkok is in a tropical region, there is an abundance of fruit, which I also love.  I’m really excited to try Rambutan.*



It’s definitely unique looking, right?
The descriptions I’ve found can’t really compare it to another fruit that I’m familiar with. The inside has been said to have a fleshy grape-like texture and it is more sweet than sour. And the plethora of fruit isn’t all.

     Rice. Rice is so important in Thai culture that when someone greets you, they sometimes will ask gin kow reu yang?, which literally translates as ‘have you consumed rice yet?.  Jasmine rice is at the top of the rice food chain but sticky rice, steamed and short grain, and boiled brown or purple rice are easily accessible.
     I read in the Lonely Planet guidebook along with several other sources, that the usual way to eat is what American’s call family style. Everyone gets a bowl of rice or noodles and several dishes (curries, stir-frys or soups) are brought to the middle of the table; everyone eats a little of this or that with their rice.  It seems very informal and oriented towards socializing. In fact, my guidebooks say that you rarely see Thai people eating alone. The more the merrier. A meal is an event, a chance to sample good food and be with good people, laughing with and talking to family and friends. Another difference is that when dining out, food is not timed and carefully delivered at specific intervals. The food is prepared and whenever it is ready it comes to the table. When it’s done it’s delivered.
     I’ll let you know within a few weeks.
    
     A few weeks. My original time table had me leaving tomorrow morning and now I’m not even packed yet. Still learning what I can before I go. A few weeks seems like not enough time and Too much time. Good news-the flood did not do any damage to the place I’ll be staying. The water did not even reach all the way up the street. I’ll take some pictures when I arrive so you have a frame of reference.

15 days to go…

*Pictures from www.joysthaifood.com

4 comments:

  1. Jennifer Turner GalvezNovember 3, 2011 at 7:19 AM

    Hey Paige! I'm really enjoying your blog. I've actually eaten that fruit before, in Honduras. They call Lychee there, but it is really good! It is a little bit like a grape and tiny bit similar to the taste of coconut but definitely not the texture. I'm really looking forward to reading about your experirences with Thai food and new ingredients. :)

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  2. Catching up on all your posts. Work has been a real pain. Looking forward to your cooking posts with interest.

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  3. Try those fruits in some flavored gelatin. I've had them in the past, and they're heavenly.

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  4. Thanks! I'll have to definitely try that.

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