Conventional wisdom associates good health with the right sorts of food. Traditional Thai medicines, mostly derived from indigenous plants found in the wild, were for centuries the only dependable cures offered by local healers. While modern medical practice has evolved, belief in natural medicines is still strong. The ingredients used in Thai cooking often provide medicinal benefits. Through the ages, Thai thinkers studied the relationship between natural conditions and the development of various illnesses. They learned to counteract maladies with natural products that offered the opposite effect. Cooling herbs or fruits offset an imbalance of heat, for instance.
The relentless summer heat in Thailand rouses the element of fire in our bodies, creating headaches, thirst, and even constipation. The conventional cure is simple - anything sweet or bitter will do! Tamarinds, oranges, acacia, gourd, pineapples, and watermelons are all effective. Greasy or spicy foods are to be shunned, as they will only heat up the body. High calories of sweet fruits like durian, jackfruit, and longans have similar effects. During the wet season, the element of wind blows strong in our bodies and we can easily catch cold or suffer flatulence. The cure: add some spices; fiery spices such as chilies, sweet basil, fennel, and ginger will warm up the body and soothe these unpleasant conditions.In winter, we often suffer from dry skin, headaches, running nose, and indigestion. Hot, bitter, and sour foods will reduce these complaints. Try dishes containing peppers, chilies, turmeric, galingale, or other spicy ingredients.

Come to Thailand and sample the delicious cuisine! You’ll delightfully satisfy your hunger while taking good care of your health.

วันพุธที่ 15 สิงหาคม พ.ศ. 2550

Tom Yum Koong (Hot and Sour Shrimp Soup)

This is one of the famous traditional Thai dishes, it is sometimes called hot and sour shrimp soup. You should order this soup with a plate rice or fried rice and fried eggs in Thai style.

2 lbs shelled prawns (add squids, fish if you like seafood)
3 cups clear broth
2 stalks emon grass, cut 1 inch pieces, lightly pounded
3 kaffir lime leaves, torn
3 Coriander roots
5 Tomatoes (small)
1/2 cup mushrooms halved
4 tablespoons fish sauce
4 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon Coriander leaves
5 small chilies, lightly pounded

Boil the clear broth and add the chopped lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves and coriander roots. Cover the pot until it begins to boil.

Add the tomatoes, mushroom and fish sauce and leave to cook.

Add he prawns, wait for the broth to boil, remove the pot from the heat then add the small chillis.

Pour the Tom Yum soup into the bowl and stir gently until well blended.

At this point, if required add additional spices and add lemon juice to taste Sprinkle the coriander leaves. Remember not to add lemon juice while you are cooking, it will turn to a bitter taste, and if you want the red color of soup you can add fried paste chillis in the soup.

Stir-fried noodle (Pad Sea Ewe)

This is a delicious stir-fried Thai noodle dish. It is basically noodles stir-fried with soy sauce- sounds kind of plain, but it is truly delicious.

8 oz of meat (beef, chicken, pork, or seafood)
8 oz noodles of your choice (normally fresh rice noodles are used)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 cup broccoli cut or Chinese kale (Chinese broccoli)
1-2 eggs

Additional Ingredients for marinade of meat:
2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon rice wine
1 tablespoon palm sugar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon black pepper.

1. Slice the meat into bite sized pieces then marinade it in recipe described above for 1 hour .
2. Prepare your noodles. If they are fresh, you do not need to do anything, but if you are using dry noodles, you will need to soak them in water for 15 or so minutes until they are soft.

You will need a medium or large size skillet or wok.
1. Grease the wok with a small amount of oil, stir-fried noodle while you put soy sauce until it turn to have a light dark color of soy sauce, then set aside.
2. Grease the wok again with small amount of oil, put the eggs in and lighty stir-fried, not well done then put the noodle in, stir-fried until it in a good mixed. Set aside for second time.
3. Grease the wok for the last time with the oil of your choice, and then cook the meat until it is almost done. Then add in the vegetable stir-fried for a while then add in the noodle and the rest of the ingredients, and stir-fry for about 2 minutes.
Some may cook it in a easy way like put everything in the wok at the same time, but I can tell you that the taste will be different from my way of cooking. Try it.

วันอังคารที่ 14 สิงหาคม พ.ศ. 2550

Panang Curry

Panang Curry is a popular favorite at many Thai restaurants. It is usually made with beef, but either chicken or pork can be substituted. Thai curries are typically a meal in themselves, but it is not uncommon to eat curry alongside your other favorite Thai dishes.

2 pounds meat (beef, chicken or pork)
1 can coconut milk
8 oz panang curry paste
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons kafir lime leaves (cut into shreds)
1/2 cup basil leaves
2 tablespoons sugar

1. Cut your meat into bite sized cubes. Using a medium to large skillet, pan fry the meat until it is almost done, then remove it and set it aside.
2. Using medium heat, add in four tablespoons of coconut milk, and let it come to a boil.
3. Add in 2-3 tablespoons of curry paste.
4. Put the meat back in, and stir until the meat is thoroughly cooked.
5. Add in half of the remainder of coconut milk. Keep stirring.
6. Add the fish sauce and the sugar.
7. Add in the rest of the coconut milk.
8. When the coconut milk thickens, add in the basil leaves and lime leaves.
9. Give it a taste. You may need to add in more fish sauce or sugar depending on your preference.

วันอาทิตย์ที่ 12 สิงหาคม พ.ศ. 2550

Chicken Satay

You can also make the same recipe with chunks of beef or pork.

1 teaspoon coriander seed
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
1 pound chicken breasts, skinned, boned, and cut into bite sized pieces.
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon curry powderpinch turmeric powder (as only a colorant, so very little!)
8 tablespoons coconut milk
3 tablespoons palm sugar

The chicken is beaten flat, using the flat of the blade of a heavy cleaver or using a meat tenderizing mallet. You can also use a rolling pin. The coriander and cumin are toasted and then crushed in a mortar and pestle. The ingredients are then combined to form a marinade, and the chicken is marinated overnight. The pieces of chicken are then threaded on the 8" satay sticks, lossely folding them in half and piercing through the folded meat to form a loose gather.
The completed sticks are then grilled, broiled or barbequed on fairly high heat (they taste best done over charcoal, as they absorb the smoke). Turn them regularly and brush them liberally with the remaining marinade. Cooking should take between 5 and 10 minutes depending on the heat of your cooker.

Nam jim satay (Peanut Sauce).

4 ounces of roasted (unsalted) peanuts
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 ounce chopped onion
1-2 tablespoon red or massaman curry paste
1 teaspoon fish sauce8 tablespoons coconut milk
4-6 teaspoons lime juice (to taste).
2-3 teaspoons palm sugar.
First grind or crush the peanuts to a fairly fine powder. Then combine them with the remaining ingredients (except the lime juice), to form a smooth sauce. If the sauce is too thick, you can thin it with a little chicken stock. Now add the lime juice, tasting as you progress to check the balance of flavors is correct.

Note use red curry paste with beef or pork satay, massaman with chicken. If you are doing shrimp satay then use half the quantity of massaman paste.

A jad (cucumber sauce)

4 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
2-3 tablespoons cucumber, very coarsely chopped or sliced
2 shallots (or any variety of purple onion) chopped
3-4 Thai chile peppers, thinly sliced.

Combine the ingredients, and leave to stand overnight.Each diner should have a small bowl of nam jim and a small bowl of a jad. However the satay themselves are normally served "communally".