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Posts Tagged ‘Recipes’

The Mystery Dish of Southern Thailand

Stir-fried Fresh Grated Coconut with Phuket Curry Paste and Chapoo Leaf

I uncovered a mystery about my grandmother’s cooking during my last trip to Phuket. I asked around about Phad Maprow Khub Kruang Gaeng, a stir-fried, fresh grated coconut with Phuket curry paste. During my childhood and adult life, I had never seen it cooked or eaten or even mentioned by anyone except members of my family. And it was only my grandmother who always asked me to assist her with it when I was young. I always wondered if it was served for health or economic reasons, or simply a food that the women of the house put on the table for their large extended family. It was never served alone, but with other main dishes and steamed jasmine rice.

I described the dish to my family to refresh their memories. My mom said that mostly we prepared it with a special kind of coconut (out of a thousand different kinds of coconuts, we used one that has an interesting texture with more like a virgin coconut oil). Then my sister-in-law, who was born in Phang Nga (80 kilometers away from Phuket), recalled eating the dish in her hometown. She said she had prepared it before, but not often. Luckily for me, she was very happy to prepare this for me while I took notes and photographs. She did it exactly the way I remember my grandmother preparing it. Thank you to my sister-in-law Tim, who helped me preserve the history of this lost recipe.

We shared the dish afterwards and more than anything else, more than its just being an interesting dish, it was a moment of rediscovery of the old time flavors of the south. We bonded again with foods. I hope that some of you will try this recipe so it won’t be lost forever.

Curry paste and fresh grated coconut in a mortar mix with pestle

First, Tim pounds the Phuket curry paste. When it became a fine paste she mixed in the freshly grated coconut and pounded to combine all of the ingredients. Then she stir-fried the mixture in a wok.

Coconut and turmeric—the colors and flavors of Southern Thailand

Stir-fried Fresh Grated Coconut Meat with Phuket Curry Paste

Phad Maprow Khub Kruang Gaeng Phuket

ผัดเนื้อมะพร้าวสดขูดกับเครื่องแกงภูเก็ต

Serves: 8 (as a side dish)

Yield: 2 cups

1/2 to 1 recipe Phuket Curry Paste (please click here for the recipe)
2 cups freshly grated coconut meat, or frozen (thaw before cooking)
1 tablespoon sugar, or to taste
Salt to taste
32 chapoo or wild pepper leaves

Combine curry paste and grated coconut by hand or with a mortar and pestle. Place in a wok (without cooking oil) over medium heat, and stir constantly to allow the coconut and curry mix to become one texture. Continue stirring until the moisture in the coconut dries up and the curry paste is well-incorporated, about 5 to 8 minutes. It should be flaky with a little bit of moisture left, neither too dry nor too oily. Serve at room temperature with wild pepper leaves on the side.

Enjoy this as a tidbit by placing about 1 tablespoon on a wild pepper leaf, then wrapping it up so you can eat it in a single bite. Or simply mix it with warm jasmine rice and enjoy it as an accompaniment to curry and vegetable dishes.

Pranee’s Note:

This recipe has not been tested yet in my kitchen, so pay attention to spicy, salty and sweet when trying this recipe.

Chapoo leaf or wild pepper leaf is also known as la lot leaf (please see Pranee’s Blog Entry on Chapoo leaf)

Pranee’s Video on Youtube: How to Open a Coconut Husk: Thai Style

More Recipes by Pranee on Phuket Curry Paste

© 2013  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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Playing with Food: Cassava

Cassava-Sweet Potato Pancake, a delicious Thai Dessert

I noticed recently that I have told my students to play with food in almost every class. I hope they have. After learning all the essential tips and techniques, the way to become a good cook is by experiencing the ingredients and having fun.

On the weekends, I clean up the fridge and cook creatively.  This weekend I had fresh cassava and sweet potato leftover from my class. While I was holding them in my hand, I heard an echo of Rösti. Rösti is a fried, grated potato dish made in Switzerland. I made a quick decision and at almost the same time my hand reached to turn on the oven to 450°F. I will heat up my well-seasoned 8-inch cast iron pan and make this quick & easy Thai dessert, Rösti style.

Cooking with cassavas is not hard at all. After grating the cassava, Thai simply add enough sugar to sweeten to taste, and some salt to bridge the flavor; a bit of coconut milk can also be added to heighten the flavor. Then the mixture is steamed and grilled until it is cooked and translucent. But something new today that I haven’t tried before is adding grated sweet potato. Why not? It was perfect. I used about 2 parts cassava to 1 part sweet potato. The glutinous property of cassava helps the sweet potato hold up nicely, and the sweet potato gives a nice orange color and sweet compliment to the dish.

Learn something new while playing with food and discover a new excitement and a sweet reward to the lesson. Cassava-Sweet Potato Pancake makes a perfect snack or dessert with light herbal tea.

Cassava - Sweet Potato Pancake

Cassava – Sweet Potato Pancake

Khanom Man Sumpalang Oop

มันสำปะหลังมันเทศแพนเค้ก

Servings: 6-8

2 cups grated cassava, fresh or frozen (if fresh , use a 10-inch-long cassava and remove the skin before grating)
1 cup grated sweet potato, about 1 small or medium
1/2 cup palm sugar or brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons coconut milk
2 tablespoon rice flour, optional
1 tablespoon cooking oil
 
Preheat the oven to 450 F.
 
Combine grated cassava, sweet potato, sugar, salt, coconut milk and rice flour in a large bowl; stir until well mixed.
 
Heat 8-inch cast iron pan on medium heat and cover the entire surface with cooking oil. Pour cassava-sweet potato pancake mixture into the pan and spread out evenly. Place uncovered in the center of the oven and bake for 20 minutes, until the bottom is crusty brown. Then turn the oven to broil and place the pan right underneath. The top of the pancake should be 6 inches below the heat source. Remove when the top is brown, about 3 to 5 minutes. Keep an eye on it! A nice crusty brown is the most delicious part of the cake. Let the pancake rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Serve warm or cold.
Cassava (yuca) roots, the Taínos' main crop

Image via Wikipedia

Pranee’s Thai Kitchen note:

Cassava is a root from the Cassava or Tapioca Plant (Manihot esculenta Crantz). It is a bushy plant that grows to about 3 meters tall. It is an annual plant with underground food-storing root-tubers. The tuber is large and long with a dark brown skin and pink underneath to protect and keep the white flesh moist. In Thailand, cassava is usually boiled or roasted and serve with sugar. It also is made into various sweets combined with grated coconut and/or coconut milk and sugar. Raw cassava is poisonous, but when cooked it became a delicious dessert.  Pearl tapioca and tapioca starch and flour are all products of cassava roots.

© 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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Rubber tree plantation in Phuket, Thailand

Image via Wikipedia

My Love for Mushrooms

My love for mushrooms was born when I was in my teen years in my Thai village. The village is surrounded by mountains on one side and rice fields on the other. It was a perfect place for wild foods. I learned to gather wild vegetables such as bamboo shoots and green and ginger family rhizomes, and of course I picked some wild orchids for myself on the way home. There were also many rubber plantations. The dried falling branches from the rubber trees were a source of firewood and rubber tree mushrooms called Hed Kreng. They are a typical mushroom that grows only on the old rubber trees which cover most of the southern peninsula of Thailand.

In Seattle, I enjoy various mushrooms and we are in luck, there are plenty of fresh mushrooms from local mushroom growers.

If you are hesitant to cook this recipe for any reason, I want to reassure you that this dish is packed full with flavors and received a five star rating from an admirer on yelp.com.

Grilled Spicy Phuket Mushroom - Rubber Tree Mushroom

 

 

Grilled Brown Button Mushrooms with Thai Basil Leaf in Banana Leaf

HED MOK PHUKET

Servings: 4 (one parcel per person)

We used to gather Hed Kreng mushrooms from old rubber tree trunks and bring them home for my mom to make my childhood favorite, Hed Mok (Grilled Mushrooms). I recreated this recipe by using brown button mushrooms that have a flavor similar to Hed Kreng. While creating this recipe, I recalled my vivid memories of how my mom prepared them, and the taste and aroma that I used to savor. The intense flavors of basil, chili, and earthy mushrooms come alive. An important part of this recipe is to grill or bake the mushrooms over high heat to intensify the flavor. Also, use coconut cream rather than coconut milk so the mixture won’t get too wet.

1 teaspoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon red curry paste
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ cup coconut cream
¼ cup shallots, sliced
1 pound brown button mushrooms, brushed and sliced
1 cup Thai purple basil leaf
4 Thai chilies, halved
4 parchment papers (12”X16”) or banana leaves

Preheat oven to 400°F.

In a large bowl, mix fish sauce, red curry paste, salt and coconut cream together until blended. Stir in shallots, mushrooms, and basil until mixed.

Divide mixture into four batches, and place each batch in the center of a piece of parchment paper. Fold the parchment paper over to make a bag; try to make it as flat as you can so the heat will distribute equally. Lay the bags of mushrooms on the baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Serve with warm steamed rice.

Pranee’s note: Oyster, button, or Portobello mushrooms would all be great for this recipe, or you can use a combination of them. Wrapping the mushroom mixture in banana leaves and then grilling them creates another depth of taste and aroma.

© 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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Eat Phuket at the 12th Annual Old Phuket Festival

Phuket Old Town Festival 2011

Last night I had a great experience traveling back to my old Phuket lifestyle with the first day of the 12th Annual Phuket Old Town Festival. We started the evening around 8pm. The first visit was to the Blue Elephant Restaurant and Cooking School. I had a chance to visit a cooking class at the restaurant which is located at the West end of the festival on Krabi Road. A block further down that road we crossed Yaowarat to get to Thalang Road where the festival takes place every year. The buildings on both sides are in the Sino-Portuguese style that was built in the 19th century.

Thalang Road, Old Phuket Festival 2011

We walked on Thalang Road where the street was full of activities related to foods and crafts that reflect the Phuket Paranakan Culture. We listened to live music. We found the Kopitiem Restaurant which has an entire menu of old Phuket foods. My niece and I ordered three dishes to share. Salad Kaek is a salad with peanut dressing with Phuket-Muslim cooking flavors. Phad Bee Htun is stir-fried rice noodles with Choy Sum and egg that looks and tastes like Singaporean Noodles. Another noodle dish that we had is Phad Mee Sua (stir-fried thin wheat noodle with seafood).

Kopitiem~Restaurant on Thalang Street, Phuket

The evening was complete when I savored the taste of home and a taste of culture. I took in the whole experience and felt my old sense of connection to our heritage. I was lost between places and tastes like a time traveler. One moment I was eating on the streets in Singapore and a few minutes later in Penang, Malaysia. But it all makes sense. Please see an excerpt below from the Thai Paranagan Association

“Baba-Paranakan culture is beautiful in both spirit and expression. It deeply blends several customs and traditions from Thai, Chinese, Malay and Western into Phuket culture, throughout many civilizations for hundreds years.”

Stir-fried Thin Rice Noodle with Choy Sum, Phad Bee Htun Phuket

Phad Bee Htun was my favorite noodle dish when I was growing up. I am proud to share this recipe with you. I hope that you can taste the flavor of Southeast Asia and the culture in that region of Paranakan.

Stir-fried Thin Rice Vermicelli with Pork and Choy Sum

Phad Bee Htun

Servings: 4 to 6

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

½ package Thai Kitchen thin rice noodles or any thin rice noodle
4 tablespoons cooking oil, or more as needed
2 eggs, lightly beaten
6 garlic cloves, minced
½ pound pork chop, sliced
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 cups Choy Sum or Chinese kale
A dash dark soy sauce, optional
4 green onions, sliced diagonally, about ½ cup
4 lime wedges, to garnish

Soak noodles in hot water until softened, about 5 minutes; drain and set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons canola oil in a wok. Beat two eggs in a bowl and then pour them into the wok. Tilt the wok so the egg will spread to make a thin omelet. Cook for one minute and flip once. Place on the cutting board and shred; set aside.

Heat wok on high heat and add 2 tablespoons canola oil and garlic. When garlic is yellow, stir in pork, light soy sauce, and fish sauce and cook until the pork is cooked. Stir in Choy Sum, cook for 30 seconds, and then stir in noodles. If desired, add a few drops of dark soy or molasses to get a tan color and a little sweet flavor. When the noodles are cooked, stir in green onion and shredded omelet; remove and serve with lime wedges and condiment below.

Condiment:

½ cup rice vinegar
½ teaspoon sugar
1 jalapeno pepper, sliced

Place rice vinegar, sugar and jalapeno pepper in a small bowl, stir.

© 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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Comfort Me with Kabocha & Rum

I amuse myself in the kitchen every year by discovering new ways to use Kabocha, my favorite squash. Seeing snow on the ground meant no going out today, so I decided to get into the kitchen to play with the Kabocha puree that I made the other day.

I was thinking of a decadent dessert that did not require any cooking on the stovetop. I had classic cream cheese in the fridge and many basic staples in my kitchen, so I started from there. After finding the right ratio between the puree and the cream cheese, I added enough sugar to make a good balance. Then I added spiced rum, one tablespoon at a time. Spiced rum is a Caribbean rum that has an amazing blend of spices, caramel and other natural flavors. I may get a little carried away in my recipe below with the Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, but when it comes to rum, the amount to add is very personal. At this point, there was still something missing from the recipe, and when I went through my spice rack, the nutmeg was yelling at me. Adding it did the trick—nothing more or less was needed.

While watching the snow melting away, my hand was busy spooning away this decadent dessert. It is pumpkin-creamy, sweet, with rummy-coconut and aromatic nutmeg. Just a perfect way to pamper oneself with comfort—a decadent dessert. Winter will be here for a while.

Pranee’s Spiced Rum Kabocha Mousse with Coconut Cream

Spiced Rum Kabocha Mousse

Serves: 6

8 ounces classic cream cheese
1½ cups Kabocha puree (see note)
⅓ cup evaporated cane sugar
¼ cup Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, divided
¼ to 1 teaspoon nutmeg
6 tablespoons coconut cream (the thick top layer from a can of coconut milk)
6 Kaffir lime leaves or mint sprigs to garnish

Use an electric mixer to blend cream cheese in a large bowl until soft, about 30 seconds. Add Kabocha squash puree, sugar, 3 tablespoons rum, and nutmeg; blend on medium speed until well-blended and smooth, about 1 minute. Chill mixture in the fridge at least 3 hours before serving.

To make spiced rum coconut cream topping, whisk coconut cream and 1 tablespoon rum in a small bowl for 10 seconds. Set aside in the fridge.

To serve, place equal amounts of the mousse mixture into 6 glasses. Garnish the top with coconut cream and lime leaves or mint sprigs.

Pranee’s Tip on Making Kabocha Puree

A medium size Kabocha squash will yield 3 to 4 cups Kabocha puree. To prepare Kabocha pumpkin puree for dumplings or pie, simply remove the skin and seeds and then cut into 1-inch chunks. Steam about 15 minutes, or until tender. Use a ricer to make a fine mash.

More recipes on this blog with Kabocha pumpkin:

Thai Pumpkin Custard, nam tao sangkaya (recipe and slide show)

Stir-fried Kabocha Pumpkin with Pork (recipe and vedio)

© 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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You say Pummelo, I say Pomelo, and Thais say ”Som Oh

One of my goals for the New Year is for my blog readers to learn light and easy Thai cooking and some new exotic ingredients. Thai cuisine has been famous for many centuries and I want people to have a more in-depth knowledge of it.

Pomelo, Thai Grapefruit - The Flower Market in Bangkok

One way that I hope I can deepen your culinary skills is simply by showing you some of the techniques that Thais use to handle their ingredients, methods learned from our families, our communities and our ancestors.  I hope the instructions in my video demonstration will help you to open your pomelo.

Pomelos tastes so great by themselves, you don’t need to cook them. I created this simple fun recipe on New Year’s Eve to provide a zing to welcome the year 2011.

Best wishes to you all.

I love pomelo. It is in season around New Year’s time, but you can enjoy it every week to give a zing to your life. There are so many way to create a wow moment with pomelo. My favorite recipe is from Phuket, Thailand, and is made with shrimp, tamarind sauce and caramelized shallots. It is a great dish for teaching my students about the layer of flavors and textures that can be found in a Thai salad.

Yum Som Oh, Pomelo Salad with Crab

For my blog visitors, I think learning to open a pomelo is challenge enough, so I am keeping this recipe simple (which is also how I cooked during this past week). This recipe is prepared like a crab or shrimp cocktail rather than the traditional pomelo salad from Thailand.

Pomelo Salad with Crab

Yum Som Oh Khup Phu

ยำส้มโอกับปู

Serves: 6

1 pomelo (prepared as shown in the video above), about 2 cups
1 shallot, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro, plus 6 cilantro sprigs for garnish
1/2 cup cooked crab meat or cooked shrimp
1 tablespoon palm sugar or brown sugar
1 tablespoon tamarind concentrate
2 tablespoons lime juice, about 1 lime
1 tablespoon fish sauce, or more as needed
1/8 teaspoon chili powder

Place pomelo, shallot, cilantro and crab in a medium size salad bowl. Whisk sugar, tamarind concentrate, lime juice, fish sauce and chili powder until well-blended, then pour over pomelo. Fold all of the ingredients together gently with a salad spoon and serve in a nice glass. Serve at room temperature or chill. Garnish with cilantro sprigs.

Vegetarian option:

Omit crab and use a few pinches of sea salt instead of fish sauce.

© 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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Pranee’s Curried Crab Filo for Holiday Entertaining

It is not a fusion and there is no confusion, they’re just for fun. Enjoy crab rangoon for a festive time.

Crab Wonton from a Chinese Restaurant

I first tasted crab wonton, or crab rangoon, in a Thai restaurant many years ago. It tasted great, but I was confused because it was not related to any Thai food in Thailand, which left me wondering about its origin. When my assistant suggested that my Thai green chili jam would be great with crab wonton, I started exploring this dish and came up with the following fun version.

I rarely do deep-frying at home, so using filo dough was the way to go for me. It provides the texture of a fried wonton, but it is a crunch with less guilt. I always heighten the flavor of a crab dish with curry powder and green onion, but this time I used pineapple chunks as well to add an interesting sweet experience to a savory dish.

Last week I attended a Girls’ Holiday Appetizer Party. As we all surrounded a dining table filled with many kinds of appetizers, I was happy to see everyone’s expressions when they tried the Curried Crab Filo. It is amazing what flavors can be experienced in just one bite!

I like to make the stuffing the day before and chill it in the refrigerator. It is a good idea to thaw your filo dough then as well. Both will be ready for you the next day. The rest is easy. Just preheat the oven, wrap and bake.

Curried Crab Filo at Home Party

Curried Crab Filo with Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam

Yield: 36 pieces

Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Baking time: 10 minutes

1 cup cream cheese
1 cup chopped fresh or canned pineapple, squeeze out excess liquid to get about ⅔ cup of pineapple
⅓ cup sliced green onions (about 5 green onions)
4 teaspoons Madras curry powder
A dash of Thai chili powder
8-ounces crab meat (about 1 cup), squeezed lightly to drain out excess water
9 (17 by 12-inch) sheets filo dough, thawed if frozen
½ cup cooking oil
3 tablespoons Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam (see blog recipe)
36 cilantro leaves
36 sliced red peppers or red loganberries

Preheat oven to 375°F.

To make the filling, combine cream cheese, pineapple, green onion, Madras curry powder, and chili powder in a medium size bowl; mix well. Gently fold in crabmeat until combined. Yield: about 2 cups filling.

Take one filo sheet from the stack and lay it out on a work surface. Brush well with oil to cover the entire surface. Lay another layer on top and brush with oil again. Add a third layer and brush with oil again.

With the length facing you, place one-third of the cream cheese filling along the edge lengthwise from left to right to make a line of filling 1 inch by 17 inches. Fold the edge forward to make a roll. As you continue to roll, brush the dry surface of filo dough with oil. The finished roll should be about 1 inch in diameter. Using a knife, cut the roll into 12 pieces and place them on a greased baking sheet.

Repeat these steps to make two more rolls, for a total of 36 pieces. Place on the same baking sheet and bake until golden, about 10 minutes.

Transfer to a platter and place a ¼ teaspoon Thai lime-green chili jam on each curried crab filo and garnish with cilantro leaves and sliced red pepper or loganberries.

Enjoy warm or at room temperature.

© 2010 Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen
I Love Thai cooking
Pranee teaches Thai Cooking class in Seattle areas, her website is: I Love Thai cooking.com

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Rice Soup for breakfast

My grandmother loved rice soup for breakfast. And I can recall a memory– I often joined her savoring this soul food before our day began. To this day when I visit Thailand, in my village, I still love having this rice soup but instead of our kitchen, I join local at the breakfast stall.

Rice Soup for Breakfast

I like rice soup in another occasion too, in the winter for lunch or dinner, as it is a real comfort food for every occasion and nothing is as good and satisfying as rice soup on a cold day and when one’s body needs gentle food. Just like American enjoys the chicken noodle soup.

Kao Tom, Thai Rice Soup for Breakfast

It is easy to make with either from scratch or use leftover rice. But when one has an extra time, I would recommend to make the rice soup from scratch, please follow the recipe below to make rice porridge. It has a nice softer texture. I never think rice soup as a pot luck dish, however my student once told me that she brought to her office potluck party and it was a hit.

Thai Rice Soup with Chicken & Egg

Kao Tom Gai Sai Kai

Serves: 1 about 2 cups

Cooking Time: 5 to 8 minutes

1 ½ tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic, about from 3 cloves
¼ cup ground chicken or pork (from chicken thigh or breast)
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 ½ cups chicken broth
1 cup steamed jasmine rice or rice porridge (see note)
1 egg
1 tablespoon thinly shredded fresh ginger
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped cilantro
A dash white pepper powder

Heat canola oil in a medium size pot on medium-high heat and stir in garlic. Stir constantly and when garlic is yellow, remove a half portion of fried garlic for garnish. Stir in chicken and cook with remaining oil and garlic, then season with salt and soy sauce. Pour in chicken broth and jasmine rice and let it cook on medium-high heat for 3 to 5 minutes.

When it reaches the desire texture of soup or porridge like, it is cooked and almost ready to serve. On high heat, crack the egg open and drop in the center of rice soup. You may stir or poach the egg in the hot rice soup; it can take from 30 seconds or 1 minute depending on your preference to cook the egg.

Pour the hot rice soup in a bowl and top with fried garlic, ginger, green onion, cilantro and white pepper powder.

© Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen

Rice Soup, Kao Tom ideally taste best when made from rice porridge specially prepare for rice soup. For this recipe you may use cold leftover rice or cooked warm rice but the texture will be different. Below is how to make rice porridge for a rice soup. The amount is enough to make 4 rice soups from the recipe above.

Kao Tom Buey

Plain Rice Porridge

Yield: 4 cups

Cooking Time: 20 minutes

1 cup jasmine rice

Bring jasmine rice and 2 cups water to a boil on high heat, and stir often while cooking for 5 minutes. Add 4 cups water and bring to a boil and let it cook on medium heat for 15 more minute. Then cook until it yields 4 cups.

Thai Rice


© 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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Spiced Up Cranberry Sauce with Thai Herbs

Cranberry Sauce with a Touch of Thai Herbs

Spiced Up Cranberry Sauce with Thai Herbs

Many years ago, when I cooked my very first cranberry sauce, I just followed the recipe on the back of the cranberry package. Now that I have lived in America for almost twenty years, I know the ingredients in the sauce quite well and have done some experimenting. For the past few years, I have enjoyed adding Thai flavors to the sauce, but now I have settled on this flavor profile. The sweet from the evaporated cane juice organic sugar (Wholesome Sweeteners Brand) goes well with the hint of caramel from the rum. Thai herbs and a unique sea salt balance out the flavors. This recipe has the sweet, sour, salty and spicy elements that add the Thai accent to my family’s Thanksgiving traditions. I hope you will enjoy cooking this recipe. Have a great Thanksgiving.

Pranee's Cranberry Sauce with Spiced Rum and Thai Herbs

Pranee’s Cranberry Sauce with Spiced Rum and Thai Herbs

Yield: 4½ cups

2 (12 ounce) packages fresh cranberries, washed and drained
2 cups organic evaporated cane sugar, or regular white sugar
1 ½ teaspoons Hawaiian Kine Seasoning Salt – Lemon Grass, or regular sea salt
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum
2 tablespoons Triple Sec orange-flavored liqueur
3 tablespoons lime juice, about 1 lime
1 stalk lemongrass, trimmed (cut off the lower bulb and remove tough, outer leaves) and smashed
1 to 2 fresh Thai chilies, smashed
3 Kaffir lime leaves
1 shallot, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons minced cilantro roots or stems

Place cranberries, sugar, salt, water, rum, triple sec, lime juice, chilies, shallot and cilantro root in a large pot, stir well and bring to a boil. Then stir as needed while cooking on medium heat until it reaches a jam-like texture, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove lemongrass, chilies, and Kaffir lime leaves. Pour cooked cranberry sauce into sterilized jars. Keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, or freeze.

Pranee’s note:

Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum is a Caribbean rum with spice, caramel and other natural flavors.

Hawaiian Kine Seasoning Salt – Lemongrass is made from rock salt, pepper, garlic, ginger and lemongrass. You may use any sea salt.

Cilantro roots (rahk pak chee) are an important Thai flavoring ingredient. Unfortunately, cilantro usually comes with its roots already cut off. Look for whole cilantro plants with roots at farmer’s markets, grow your own, or substitute the bottom stems. If you do find cilantro with roots, rinse them well and use the roots along with about an inch of the bottom stems to which they are attached. You may also find frozen cilantro root in Asian markets.

© 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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Inle Lake Green Tomato Salad, a Recipe from Shan StateMyanmar

Green Tomato, Red Tomato and Somewhere in Between

Today, on my way back from the University District Farmers Market, I visited a friend and saw her tomatoes in various shades of colors on her windowsill. Then I remembered that I wanted to share this recipe with you.

When I see green tomatoes, I think of my family’s visit to Inle Lake, Myanmar in June 2008. Our two-hour boat ride was enchanting, and we saw a fisherman using his foot to row his canoe. At the shallow edge of the lake were floating gardens with rows and rows of tomato plants. We had a chance to see the hydroponic farms and miles of tomatoes growing on floating gardens.

Inle Lake Fisherman

When we stopped for lunch and a cooking class at the View Point Restaurant, the chef surprised us with a green tomato salad along with many famous Shan State dishes. The menu reflected the local abundance of tomatoes from local farming, as Inle lake is the largest source of tomatoes and vegetables in Myanmar.

If you are planning to visit Myanmar anytime soon, please do make sure that the View Point Restaurant & Cooking School is in your itinerary. I love the people who work there, and the views of rice fields, the river, and the bridge—a great place to observe locals going about their daily lives.

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I had never eaten green tomatoes before but I am familiar with the concepts of fried green tomatoes, pickled green tomatoes, and green tomato relish. So what else can you do with green tomatoes? Inle Lake Green Tomato Salad is an answer here.

Before cooking and eating green tomatoes, this is what you should know.

Thisis an excerpt about Tomatoes & Health that I copied from About.com:.“Although green tomatoes are wonderful when cooked or pickled, they should be avoided in large amounts when raw. Green tomatoes contain large amounts of tomatine, a toxin in the same alkaloid family as solanine which may be found in green potatoes, another member of the nightshade family. ”

I ate a few pieces of green tomato slices and felt fine but didn’t like the taste; it was too tart and bitter.  My friend Deb had mentioned that green tomatoes shouldn’t be eaten fresh, so I  decided to bake the green tomato slices for 15 to 20 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. The cooked tomatoes  tasted great, but the color was dark green.  I bake my green tomatoes or simply use firm ripe tomatoes instead.

Inle Lake Green Tomato Salad

This green tomato salad is very simple to make. You start by making  Lemongrass Vinegar.  I would recommend making a lot of it and storing it in the refrigerator.  It can be added to any recipe that calls for vinegar.

Inle LakeGreen Tomato Salad

Yum Makruatad Keow

4 large green or ripe tomatoes, sliced
1 shallot, peeled and minced
1 tablespoon chopped  peanuts, dry roasted and unsalted peanut
1 tablespoon fried minced garlic plus 1 teaspoon garlic oil ( this the oil that the garlic was fried in)
1 to 2 tablespoons lemongrass vinegar 
1 teaspoon toasted dark or light  sesame oil
½ teaspoon black sesame seeds
Salt to taste

Place green tomato slices on a large platter.

To make salad dressing, combine the shallot, peanuts, fried garlic, garlic oil, lemongrass vinegar, and sesame oil in a small bowl and whisk until combined. Pour over green tomatoes and garnish with black sesame seeds.

© 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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Pranee’s Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam   

 

Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam

I have three different kinds of chili jam in my kitchen cabinet: Plum-Ginger Thai Pepper Jelly, Mango Madness, and Sweet Pepper Jalapeño Jam. These were precious gifts from good friends and they inspired me to create my own jam recipes. When my friend Ron gave me a bag of fresh green Star Fire Chilies from his favorite farm, “Krueger Family Peppers and Produce, Inc.” in Wapato, Washington, a journey began.

I wanted to create a Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam with a fun flavor from Kaffir lime leaf. First I explored the jam-making process and daydreamed about the flavor combinations, then I got a hands-on lesson on canning from my friend Kaia. She recommended a few books, and I purchased one, the “Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving.” A week later, I found the best price for canning jars, and in the past few weeks, I have created three combinations of chili jam. Honestly, I love all of them: Sweet Red, Lime-Green and Pineapple-Orange.

I have also learned my lessons on the do’s and don’ts of using powdered pectin. If the jam doesn’t set, follow the Sure-Jell instructions on how to remake the jam. After a few experiences, I became comfortable with the process. The most important part was that I had so much fun making close to one hundred jars of jam, and so did my friends. All I have to do now is to listen to their creative ways of using the chili jam.

I would like to share my Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam with you. It would be fun to serve side-by-side with cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving. You can learn to use it creatively during the holidays, and it makes a great gift for families and friends.

Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam with Citrus Flavors

Like green curry paste, the green color in this jam comes from fresh Thai green chilies. I also use green-colored peppers, herbs, lime juice, and all the Thai herbs to give it a real Thai flavor.

Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam  

Yam Prik Keow  

Yield: 5 1/2 cups or 14 (4-ounce) jars or 6 (8-ounce) jars

4 green bell peppers, cored and diced
30-40 fresh Thai green chilies, stems removed (I used Star Fire chilies)
1/2 cup diced red onion, about 1/2 medium-size onion
1 package Sure-Jell fruit pectin
2 cups cane vinegar (a vinegar made from cane sugar, available in most Asian markets)
2 to 4 tablespoons lime juice
4 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
10 Kaffir lime leaves
1 stalk lemongrass, trimmed and smashed
1 tablespoon butter
1 drop green food coloring, optional

Place bell pepper, fresh Thai green chilies, and onion in a food processor;  pulse to make a fine chunk (about 3 cups). Combine the  mixture with Sure-Jell, vinegar, lime juice and salt in a large, deep, stainless steel saucepan. Mix well until the pectin is dissolved. Bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in Kaffir lime, lemongrass and butter. Bring to a boil and cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in sugar all at once and return to a full rolling boil; stir constantly for 4 minutes. 

Remove from heat and ladle into jars filling to within 1/8 inch of the top. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover tightly and store in refrigerator.

Note:  If you want a jam that can be stored (unopened) at room temperature, visit the Sure Jell website for instructions on how to process the jars.

 © 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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Everything Goes in Rice Pilaf

Kao Op

Today,  I looked for some leftovers in the fridge, but there weren’t any ready to heat up. Instead I found odds and ends of leftover ingredients.

 I had stewed tomatoes, sliced Jimmy Nardello Peppers (Sweet Italian Frying Peppers from Tahoma Farm), a halved onion and chorizo. In my cabinet I had Bomba rice (a Spanish rice used in paella) from The Spanish Table and Harissa spice mix, a hot chili spice blend from Northern Africa that I had purchased from World Spice Merchants. Right on the spot, I decided to cook rice pilaf. I didn’t want to open any cookbooks or Google for ideas, and because it was a busy day I could just put it in the oven and go back to work in my home office. I just wanted to have fun and rice pilaf is a very easy recipe for anyone to come up with unique flavors. The ingredients I had were mainly Spanish so I went with that as my theme.

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To cook any rice pilaf,  the important part to remember is the liquid to rice ratio. For example, for basmati and jasmine rice you will need 1½ cups of liquid to a cup of rice, but for Bomba rice the ratio is 1½ to 2 cups of water to 1 cup of rice.  

Spanish Rice Pilaf with Chorizo and Italian Frying Peppers

Kao Op Spain

Yield: 7 cups

Servings: 6

3 tablespoons canola oil
½ cup diced onion, about ½ onion
2 cups Bomba, calrose, or basmati rice
1 ½ teaspoons salt
6 links chorizo sausage, sliced
1 cup diced sweet peppers, about 4 sweet pepper
1 cup stewed tomato chunks or stewed tomatoes from a can
2 tablespoons Harisssa spicy mix powder
3 cups chicken or vegetable broth, or water (use 4 cups if you are using Bomba rice)

Preheat the oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven  or heavy-bottom pot on medium heat, then stir in onion until it is fragrant and translucent. Add Bomba rice and salt and stir until it is well coated with oil. Stir in chorizo sausage, sweet peppers, tomatoes, Harissa mix and water; combine and bring to a boil for 1 minute, stirring well. Cover the pot with the lid and place on the rack in the center of the oven. Set the timer for 30 minutes, then remove the pot from the oven and leave it on the cook top to sit for at least 15 minutes without opening the lid. Before serving, stir well to combine all ingredients together.

Pranee’s note: Bomba rice (Arroz de paella) is a product of Spain and costs about $6 a pound. Thai and basmati rice are usually less than a $1 a pound. Bomba rice is short grain rice that expands in width, while most rice varieties expand in length. It absorbs more liquid than other types of rice, but remains firm when cooked and has a great texture.

See also Pranee’s Thai Kao Mok Gai Recipe, a form of rice pilaf from Thailand.

This history of rice pilaf and definition from Wikipedia

“Depending on the local cuisine, it may also contain a variety of meat and vegetables. . Pilaf and similar dishes are common to Middle Eastern, Central and South Asian, East African, Latin American, and Caribbean cuisines…….The English term pilaf is borrowed directly from Turkish, which in turn comes from (Classical) Persian پلو and Hindi pulav (पुलाव), and ultimately derives from Sanskrit pulaka (पुलाक)[2″

© 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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Northern Thai Cuisine with the Kantok Diner

When planning a trip to Chiang Mai, the largest city in northern Thailand, one must see all of the cultural aspects that Northern Thai culture or Lanna culture has to offer. That is why I took my tour members to the Old Chiangmai Cultural Center. It is my favorite place for eating Northern Thai cuisine, listening to Thai music, and watching the dances. This may seem like a tourist trap, but for a short visit to Chang Mail, I recommend this experience before returning home. My visits with tour members in February 2007 and 2008 were memorable. We sat under the moonlight in a courtyard surrounded by old Thai teak buildings, ate, and watched the dance show. And of course the visitors had a chance to dance at the end.

Kantok Dinner at the Old Chiangmai Cultural Center

A typical Kontok dinner menu consists of Pork-Tomato Chili Dip (Nam Prik Ong), Green Chili Pepper Dip (Nam Prik Num), Fried Chicken (Gai Tod ), Chaingmai Curry Pork (Geang Hungley), Fried Banana (Kleuy Tod) and all of the vegetable condiments that go with chili dip, plus steamed sticky rice and steamed jasmine rice. All of these dishes were placed in bowls (kan) and set on a small round teak or rattan table (tok) that was only about 10 inches tall. We sat around the table and ate the food with our fingers, or with forks and spoons.

Tomato-Pork Chili Dip, Nam Prk Ong

Inspired Recipe from Our Chiang Mai Kantok Dinner

Nam Prik Ong

Tomato-Pork Chili Dip

Nam Prk Ong

น้ำพริกอ่อง

This dish is easy to make, and among Thai chili dips, pork-tomato chili dip is easy to love. It has a tomato base and is spicy hot with chili pepper, but does not have too strong a taste of shrimp paste. The secret is to use the ripest, reddest and sweetest tomatoes you can find. I recommend multiplying the recipe so you will have enough to keep some in the freezer. In Seattle I keep some Nam Prik Ong in the fridge to use as a condiment when I serve a meal with one main protein dish. I also love to use it as a condiment with steamed jasmine rice or to accompany other savory dishes or an array of fresh vegetables.

Yield: 1 cup

2 cilantro roots, or 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro stems
1 stalk lemongrass, trimmed and sliced, about 3 tablespoons
3 Chile Guajillo, or New Mexico chili pods, sliced and soaked in warm water for 30 minutes
5 whole dried Thai chilies, soaked in warm water for 30 minutes
10 cloves garlic, peeled
5 shallots, peeled and sliced
1 to 2 teaspoons shrimp paste placed on a piece of parchment paper and roasted in a 350BF oven for 10 minutes, (or substitute 1 tablespoon Napoleon anchovy paste)
1 teaspoon salt, or more as needed
3 tablespoons canola or peanut oil
¼ cup ground pork
1 cup sweet cherry tomatoes or any sweet tomato variety, chopped
1 tablespoon palm sugar or brown sugar
1 tablespoon fish sauce
¼ cup chopped cilantro to garnish

Make a curry paste by placing the cilantro roots, lemongrass, chili Guajillo, Thai chilies, garlic, shallots, shrimp paste and salt in the food processor. Turn on the machine and while it runs, pour cooking oil into the spout in a stream (like making pesto). Let the processor run for 3 minutes, stopping it occasionally to use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the machine.

Place the curry paste in a frying pan with the pork and cook over medium heat until the pork is no longer pink. Stir in tomato, palm sugar, and fish sauce and let it simmer until the tomato is softened. Nam Prik Ong should have the consistency of tomato sauce (not watery). When it is done, stir in chopped cilantro and serve with jasmine rice and vegetable condiments, or serve it Kantok Dinner Style with sticky rice and other traditional dishes.

Vegetable Condiments: Sliced cucumbers, long beans, wing beans, Thai eggplants, banana blossoms, steamed Kabocha pumpkin.

© 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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Amazing Thai & Vietnamese Flavors with Local Organic Farm Produce from Orting

Last Saturday, October 1st, was my first visit to the town of Orting, which is only one hour from Seattle. It was a beautiful fall day and I had a beautiful drive. I love the town. I was doing a cooking demo for PCC Cooks and PCC Farmland Trust at the Orting Valley Farms. It is PCC Culinary Trust’s latest preserved farm to save local organic farmland forever! It was also Pierce Country Harvest Fest and there were many people visiting, including young kids who decided on the spot that they love Thai and Vietnamese flavors.

At Tahoma Farms, Dan, the owner of the farm, grilled corn and served warm apple cider, while I cooked and  handed out samples of my Northwest Salad with Thai Chili-Lime Vinaigrette and Vietnamese Lemongrass-Scented Eggplant Stew. Groups of visitors came by either before or after taking a hayride,  and live country music was playing in the barn.

It was fun to meet so many people, including many families with young kids. It was great to learn that they all enjoyed my cooking. Therefore, I would like to share one of the recipes with you: Northwest Salad with Thai Chili-Lime Vinaigrette. At the farm I used dinosaur kale, sweet basil, Johnny Nardello peppers, and heirloom tomatoes for the salad. A Roy Dee Kha!

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Northwest Salad with Thai Chili-Lime Vinaigrette

Yum Pak

Northwest salad with Thai chili-Lime vinaigrette Recipe, Yum Pak

I created this simple recipe this summer using fresh Northwest produce. The Thai-flavored vinaigrette uses olive oil, chili, lime and fish sauce. It makes a bright salad with interesting flavors.
 
 Serves 8 
 
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil or garlic oil
1 teaspoon sea salt or 4 teaspoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon evaporated cane sugar
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons lime juice or lemon juice
2 shallots, peeled and sliced
24 cherry tomatoes, whole, or  2 heirloom tomatoes, sliced
1 cup sweet basil leaves, washed and drained
1 cup kale, washed and chopped
1 cup mixed sweet pepper varieties, julienned
1 cup dill or cilantro leaves (or any Asian herbs such as basil, lemon basil)
2 tablespoons toasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds

Whisk olive oil, sea salt or fish sauce, sugar, pepper, chili powder and lime or lemon juice until well mixed. Fold in shallots, tomatoes, arugula, kale, sweet peppers, dill or cilantro and mix gently. Sprinkle with sunflower seeds and serve immediately.

© 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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Three Kinds of Pepper Leaves in Southeast Asia

There are three kinds of pepper leaves in the black pepper (Piperaceae) family. They can be easily confused by the inexperienced. This is how I explain the three types to my students when the lesson comes to the use of wild pepper leaf.

Wild Pepper Leaf - Chapoo - La Lot

A wild pepper leaf, or Piper Sarmentosum Roxb, is a common name for cha plu in Thai, Kaduk in Malaysian and la lot in Vietnamese. It is a ground cover in my garden in Phuket. Thais use it in Hua Mok, Miang Kam and tidbits. My favorite of all is when it is put in a stink ray curry.

Black Pepper Plant

A black pepper plant, Piper Nigrum, is in the same family as chapoo and la lot but it is a climbing plant. Only the fruit is edible. Thais love to cook green peppercorns with hot pungent curry dishes. When the pepper corn matures and is sun dried, it can be used to make black peppercorn.

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Last in the family are betel leaves, or Piper Betle. When I was young, I always picked a fresh betel leaf for my grandmother, who enjoyed chewing the leaf when it was painted with pink limestone and wrapped around a sliced betel nut. Afterwards she would enjoy her afternoon siesta. Betel leaves and betel nut are also used for worship and are special symbols in ritual events.

Curried Scallop with Wild Pepper Leaf — Gaeng Hoy Shell Bai Chapoo

I cook professionally during the week but at home on the weekend I cook like any home cook. Sunday is an iron chef day – I use whatever is in my refrigerator. I had some wild pepper leaf, a leftover from a Miang Kam dish during the week, and some Alaskan scallops in the freezer. I like to cook chapoo leaf in a curry with a strong flavored fish or meat; a hint of black pepper from the leaf gives a very interesting flavor to the dish, and coconut milk sweetens the bitter edge. This recipe is very quick. All you have to do is write down the word “la lot” and go to a Vietnamese market.

Curried Scallop with Wild Pepper Leaf

Gaeng Hoy Shell Bai Chapoo

Serves: 2

2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons red curry paste
2/3 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup water
6 large scallops
30 wild pepper leaves, AKA chapoo in Thai and La Lot in Vietnamese
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon fish sauce
2 teaspoons fried shallots

Heat canola oil in a medium-size pot on medium-high heat. Stir in red curry paste and fried until fragrant. Stir in 1/3 cup coconut milk and let it cook until oil is separated and fragrant; add the rest of the coconut milk and water and bring to a boil. Stir in scallops and wild pepper leaves and cook until scallops are opaque in color, about 5 minutes. Season with sugar and fish sauce and serve hot. Garnish with fried shallots. Serve warm with steamed jasmine rice.

© 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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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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Fish Sauce Chicken Wing

My son loves Teriyaki Chicken and also chicken wing. After eating and inhaling fish sauce chicken wing with sticky rice at the Pok Pok Thai Restaurant in Portland , I decided to create a recipe that is close to my tasting memories. I substituted fish sauce for soy sauce in my own teriyaki sauce recipe created way back. And it works, now everyone loves the fish sauce chicken wings as well. To get a nice even brown, you have to be patient and keep turning the chicken every 5 minutes. Please remember that the high heat can burn the skin quickly due to the brown sugar used in the marinade.   After a few tries, I am happy with the result. Time to get your fingers dirty by eating this dish and  might as well with Thai sticky rice, because that is the best way to eat it.  

Grilled Fish Sauce Chicken Wing  

Gai Nampla Yang  

Yield: 10 wings
4 tablespoons brown sugar
4 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons dry sherry
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 pounds chicken wings, about 10 wings

To make a marinade, stir sugar, fish sauce, dry sherry and rice vinegar in a large bowl until sugar is dissolved. Place chicken wings in a zip-lock bag and pour in marinade. Remove the air from the bag and seal. Let’s it marinated in refrigerator for at least three hours and flip the bag every half hour. Drain well before grilling.Pre-heat the gas grill, then set at medium heat. Grill both side until nicely brown but not burnt and it will take about 20 to 30 minutes.  

Serve with jasmine rice or sticky rice and  Somtum: Thai Green Papaya Salad. Sriracha hot sauce and sweet chili sauce also are ideal dipping sauces for chicken wings.  

© 2010  Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen  

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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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Local Cabbage from Ballard Farmer Market

PHAD KALUMPEE

Stir-fried cabbage with garlic and ginger

Cabbage is the most popular vegetable in Southeast Asia. It belongs in the Brassica Oleracea family along with bok choy and gai larn (Chinese kale or broccoli). It’s commonly used in stir-frying, curry and soup dishes.

My favorite way of preparing cabbage at home is to stir-fry it with salt and pepper for a side dish. This month I enjoy stir-frying cabbage with leftover turkey and lots of ginger and garlic.

Nutritionally, cabbage is high in Vitamin C and fiber, and contains anti-inflammatory benefits. With the two additions of garlic and ginger (flu prevention aids), what a great recipe for healthy eating.

Servings: 4

Preparation: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

3 tablespoons canola oil

3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced

1 tablespoon shredded ginger

1 cup shredded cooked turkey, optional

3 cups shredded cabbage

1 tablespoon oyster sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon sugar

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat canola oil in a wok on high heat and stir in garlic and ginger. When garlic is golden, stir in turkey and cabbage. Then add oyster sauce, soy sauce and 3 tablespoons of water. Cover and quickly braise until cabbage is cooked but still has a slight crunchy texture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Serve hot as a side dish with steamed jasmine rice.

Vegetarian option: omit turkey, use vegetarian oyster sauce

Gluten-Free option: use wheat free soy sauce, wheat free oyster sauce

 

Thai Cooking Recipe for Kids

 

 © 2010  Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen  
 I Love Thai cooking
 
Pranee teachs Thai Cooking class in Seattle areas, her website is:  I Love Thai cooking.com

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Cilantro, also known as coriander, is a key ingredient in Thai and Southeast Asian cooking, especially the cilantro root.Thai cooks treasure the roots and in Thailand cilantro is always sold with its roots.The root is very aromatic and has lots of flavor when cooked. It’s a precious ingredient—a treat among herbs—and an important ingredient in curry paste, marinades and meat stir-frys. When the root is not available, substitute four stems for one root. Try the recipe featured below for an opportunity to experience the unique flavor and fragrance of cilantro root.

Kratiem Prik Thai Goong – กระเทียมพริกไทยกุ้ง

Goong Kratiem PrikThai
Sautéed Garlic Prawn Recipe
Servings: 8
Preparation Time: 15 minutes   
Cooking Time: 5 minutes

These garlic prawns have a peppery accent and are an astonishingly easy-to-prepare crowd pleaser. The first six ingredients in this recipe make a classic spicy Thai marinade paste. You can use it to create many simple dishes by using it as a marinade for chicken or a spicy paste for chicken or pork patties. For best results, grind the marinade paste using a mortar and pestle. Otherwise, use a small food processor.

½-1 tablespoon black peppercorns
¼-½ teaspoon salt
10 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 cilantro roots or 5 cilantro stems
3 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar
32 prawns, peeled and deveined
5 tablespoons cooking oil
Cilantro and lime wedges for garnish

In mortar, place black peppercorns, salt, 5 cloves of garlic and cilantro roots; pound with pestle until it becomes a paste. Stir in light soy sauce and brown sugar to make marinade sauce. Pour the marinade sauce over prawns and mix well. Set aside. In a frying pan, fry remaining garlic until golden yellow; remove and set aside. In the same frying pan, fry prawns until cooked. Place prawns on a serving plate and garnish with fried garlic and cilantro leaves. Serve lime wedges on the side.

 
© 2009  Pranee Khruasanit Halvorsen
I Love Thai cooking
 

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