More Thai Food Recommendations
With the exception of soups,dim sum and some noodles, Thais usually eat with a fork and spoon. Much Thai food is bite sized when it is served, but the edge of a spoon may be used to cut. A fork held in the left hand (for right handers) separates positions of food and pushes it into the spoon. Most Thai restaurants in Thailand will not automatically include a knife in the place setting.
Food will usually be served family style when several are dining together. Depending on the restaurant, you may be given a plate of rice, or rice may be served into your plate from a large bowl. Take a spoonful or two of food from one of the "entrees" into your plate, fashion spoonfuls of the "entree" with rice, then enjoy some of the best food on the planet.
Sauces are used to highlight the flavor of Thai foods. They will range from chili-hot to sweet to salty. If in doubt as how or with what to use the sauce, ask the server.
Prik nahm plaa may be the most common. It is a thin sauce made from fish similar to anchovies to which has been added chopped green and red chilies. Thais use this for seasoning and salt. Its "heat" can vary considerably.
Sriracha, which is a slightly sweet and relatively mild chili sauce, is the Thai answer to tomato catsup. This orange colored sauce is served with a number of foods.
Nahm jim jeaw is a brown sauce made from nahm pla, shaved garlic, lemon juice, coarse ground red pepper, finely chopped green onions, and tamarind juice. It can be somewhat hot, but makes an excellent dipping sauce for bar-b-qued and deep fried meats.
Sweet or Sweet and Sour sauces come in a bewildering array of recipes. They will normally be served along with dishes such as spring rolls and tod mun. Experimentation is the best way to find the tastes that suit you best. Watch Thai diners as well. They are the experts.
Thai desserts have the benefit of being refreshing but not overwhelmingly sweet like so many western desserts. Some example to try might be:
Sangkhaya Fakthong or custard pumpkin. It is a cooked desert made with pumpkin, eggs, sugar and coconut cream.
Bua Loi Phuak is taro balls in coconut cream. Taro balls are made with glutinous rice, flour and mashed taro. Palm sugar and coconut milk are cooked, then the taro balls are added.
Kluai Buat Chi is banana cooked in coconut milk.
Khao Neeo Mah Muang fantastic if in season. Sweet mangos served with sweet sticky rice topped with coconut cream.
A caveat: never try to say "banana" in Thai. It sounds very similar to "penis"
Thailand's climate varies from tropical to subtropical so a variety of fruit is available. Some varieties are seasonal, others are available year round.
Banana - kluai
Thai Food Suggestions
Gy yahng, som-tahm, kaho neeo Bar-b-que chicken, papaya salad and sticky rice. Very popular in open air restaurants. Tell them my pet on the som-tahm which is the seasoned dish.
Moo yahng Bar-b-que pork. (mild)
Gy pahd med mamuang Chicken stir-fried cashew nuts. (mild)
Gy pahd joht kaho pod Chicken stir-fried with babycorn. (mild)
Gaang kioo wann gy Chicken curry with bamboo. (varies)
Gaang gy Chicken curry with coconut. (varies)
Gaang pet gy sapparot Chicken curry with pineaple. (varies)
Satey gy Chicken satay with peanut sauce. (mild)
Tohm kah gy Chicken soup with lempngrass. (varies)
Gy pahd preeoh wahn Chicken sweet and sour. (mild)
Sub kaho pod Corn soup. (mild)
Gaang pet moo sapparot Pork curry with pineaple. (varies)
Gaang goong sapparot Prawn curry with pineaple. (varies)
Bamee pahd gy Fried noodles with chicken. (mild)
Bamee paht Fried noodles with brocolli and pepper. (varies)
Paht paak ruamit Stir fried vegetables. (mild)
Yam wusen Glass noodle salad. (spicy)
Gaang musahmahn Muslim curry. (varies)
Panang moo Panang curry with pork. (mild)
Gaang sapparot Pineapple curry. (mild)
Goong paht too ngoh Prawn with soy bean sprouts. (mild)
Goong ohp wunsen Prawns with glass noodles. (varies)
Goong grathiem prik Thai Prawns with garlic and chiles. (spicy)
Yam nuea Beef salad. (spicy)
Tohm yam goong Prawn soup. (spicy)
Ky yuud sy Stuffed omelette. (mild)
Plah muk prik yawk Squid with pepper. (varies)
Plah muk kwayteo Squid with rice noodles. (varies)
Gaang garrei neua Yellow curry with beef. (mild)