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Posts Tagged ‘Fish sauce’

Som Tum, a Green Papaya POK POK 

Som Tum - Thai Green Papaya Salad

Pok Pok is the sound made when a wooden pestle hits a clay mortar. This is a classic sound in the green papaya making process and it is a familiar sound for Thais and tourists alike because Som Tum vendors are everywhere in Thailand. When I teach papaya salad recipes, I make sure to carry my clay mortar and wooden pestle with me to my cooking classes in Seattle, Lynwood, Edmonds and even Portland. I feel that it is important for students to understand the cultural and traditional aspects of  Thai cuisineFor me, making and eating green papaya salad is a cure for homesickness. But is not easy to find green papayas outside of Thailand, so sometimes we have to improvise.

Shredded Green Papaya and Carrot for Som Tum

Carrots are always a great substitute when fresh green papaya is not available. My first experience eating Som Tum made from other vegetables besides green papaya was when I was traveling in Switzerland and France visiting friends and relatives.

In Seattle you can find green papaya everyday at the Asian markets, but at farmers market events in Washington I always enjoy making Som Tum with various farm fresh vegetables. And I am always delighted that it still makes a great impression on everyone. First the Pok, Pok sound, then the flavors of chili-lime and peanuts dressing that make all fresh salad tastes so good. My favorite vegetables and fruits for this recipe are carrots, kale, green apples, green mangos, green beans and cucumbers.

Som Tum – Thai Green Papaya Pok Pok

Yesterday I was making special version of Som Tum for a Pike Place Market Sunday Event. I combined Som Tum made from local carrots and kale with cooked rice noodles and smoked local King salmon. Combining Thai and northwest flavors together using a mortar and pestle produced a delicious dish.  Let’s cook with the Thai rhythms!

Please also see Pranee’s Somtum Recipe featured in Seattle Times, Pacific Northwest Sunday Magazine

SOM TUM PLA SALMON

Green Papaya Salad with Smoked Salmon and Rice Vermicelli

Servings: 4
 
3-6 garlic cloves, peeled
5 Thai chilies, whole
2-3 tablespoons palm sugar or brown sugar
6 tablespoons dry roasted peanuts
3 tablespoons fish sauce
3 tablespoons lime juice
¼ lime, cut into 4 small wedges
8 cherry tomatoes, halved, or 2 large tomatoes cut into wedges
½ cup green beans, cut into 1 inch lengths
2 ounce smoked salmon, sliced, about ¼ cup, divided
2 cups shredded green papaya, carrot, cabbage, kale or any fresh vegetable
1 cup rice noodles or rice vermicelli, cooked using the instruction on the package

To make a dressing, use a wooden pestle to crush garlic, chilies, palm sugar and 1 tablespoon roasted peanuts in a clay mortar until it forms a paste. Stir in fish sauce and lime juice with pestle in circular motion until blended.  With pestle, gently mix in lime wedges, tomatoes, string beans, half of the smoked salmon and shredded papaya by pushing down the ingredients against one side of the mortar and using a large spoon to lift up on the opposite side. Repeat a few times until well incorporated.  Serve right away with rice noodles and topped with the rest of the smoked salmon.

Cook’s note: If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, here is an easy way to make a salad dressing. Blend garlic, Thai chilies, palm sugar, 1 tablespoon roasted peanuts, fish sauce and lime juice in a blender until smooth. Mix the rest of peanuts, string beans, dried shrimps, tomatoes and green papaya in a salad bowl. Pour the dressing over the salad and gently mix them together by hand until salad is well coated with the dressing.

© 2010  Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen
I Love Thai cooking

Pranee teaches Thai Cooking classes in the Seattle area. Her website is: I Love Thai cooking.com

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Eating in Southeast Asia

Traveling through Vietnam in 2009 as a culinary tour leader was an interesting and heartwarming experience. The local people are so eager to share their country’s wonderful cuisine and culture and spend time with you. You’re treated more like a welcome guest than a tourist.

Back home in Phuket with my traveling companion, we rested and strolled on the beach and enjoyed the best food in Phuket: local seafood.

We were lucky to become friends with Chef Tony of the popular Rockfish Restaurant after savoring our first plate of his Thai crab salad. He generously agreed to share his recipe and do a cooking video for my newsletter to welcome our mango season here in America.

Chef Tony Wringley has been working at Rockfish Restaurant as executive chef for the past 6 months. His recipe was inspired by local and seasonal ingredients from Phuket Island such as local crab, fresh mango and coconut. Chef Tony has captured the flavors of the tropical island of Phuket with this Thai crab salad.

Thai Crab Salad with Mango and Shaved Coconut

Thai Crab Salad with Mango and Shaved Fresh Coconut Recipe

Yum Pu Mamuang Maprow

Recipe by Chef Tony Wrigley
Executive Chef, Rockfish Restaurant
Kamala Beach, Phuket, Thailand
Rockfish Restaurant

Serves: 1

½ cup cooked crab meat
½ cup diced mango, about half mango
¼ cup sliced red spur chili or Anaheim pepper
2 green onions, chopped into 1-inch long pieces
3 sprigs cilantro, torn into large pieces
10 Thai basil leaves or sweet basil, torn in half
¼ cup chili peanuts or dry roasted peanuts
2 teaspoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 tablespoons lime juice, about 1 lime
¼ cup fresh shaved coconut or dry coconut chips
1 teaspoon chili oil for presentation

Gently combine crab, mango, red spur chili, green onions, cilantro, Thai basil and chili peanuts. Add fish sauce, sugar, olive oil and lime juice, and fold just to mix. Place crab salad on the plate, garnish with shaved fresh coconut on top and decorate the plate with chili oil. Makes one serving.

How to shave fresh coconut with a peeler

© 2011 Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen

I Love Thai cooking Pranee teaches Thai Cooking classes in the Seattle area. Her website is: I Love Thai cooking.com .

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