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Thai Food and Thai Cooking

Thai Food Culture

The food in Thailand means a lot fore the people. The everyday social gatherings almost always include some type of food. Usually it´s not so much food on every plate but instead you have many different meals to choose from. To eat six-seven meals a day is not unusual. According to modern nutrition the Thai way to eat is the best fore your body. Normally Thai people eat with fork and spoon, but if you eat a dish with noodles you use chop sticks. Like Thailand's language and culture, the Thai cooking is divided in to four main regions in the country: The northern part, the northeast (Isan and Isaan) the central parts and the south. A complete meal often includes the five different tastes: Sweet, Sour, salt, bitter and the famous, spicy (phet). Access to different types of food and influences from the neighboring country's, has given the food in the respective regions its special mark:

Cheap meals directly on the street

North Thailand

The food culture in northern Thailand has bin influenced by Burmese and south Chinese food traditions. The climate of the region has made the access of vegetables and herbs is satisfying. Moderate use of spices and the generous use of lime and garlic, has become one of the distinguishing features of northern art of cooking.

Examples of food from the north:

  Khao Soi - Egg Noodles with curry.

  Nam Phrik Ong - Boiled pork with chili and tomato.

Isan salad

Northeast Thailand

Isan's agriculture area is competing with the south of have the most spicy food in the country. The famous chile and lime favored papaya salad often counts like Isan's national dish. Worth mention is that in this region people eat things that can look strange fore people who come from the western world. A few examples are fried insects and dry frogs, this kind of food you eat like a snack. But food like snake and field rat functions as a main dish in some parts of the region. Anyhow, there is a lot of food that you can it even if you are a fastidious farang. Of course has the poverty played a big part in the food tradition in this region.

Examples of food from the northeast:

  Khao Niaow - Sticky rice that you eat with your hands and dip in different sauces and food.

  Som Tam - Very spicy papaya salad.

  Gai Yang - Grilled chicken often marinade in fish sauce, lemon grass, garlic and pepper.

Central Thailand

The central parts of the country (included Bangkok) have strong Chinese and Indian influences in there food. Rice is often the base in Thai cooking (often describe as "kin khao" which means "eat rice") and the central part of the country has made it self famous by producing the best rice in the country. The typical white jasmine rice is eaten as much as its exported abroad. One of the most typical dishes, Tom Yum Kung, has its origin in this parts of the country.

Thai food

Examples of food from the central part:

  Red Curry, Green Curry and Panang Curry.

  Tom Yum Kung - Thailand's national dish. Its a soup with fresh shrimps, lemon grass etc.

Southern Thailand

The southern´s nearness to the ocean, as well as the nearness to Malaysia, has made fish, seafood and curries typical dish here. The generous use of chili do to food often serves very spicy. One of the most famous Thai dishes is chicken satay or Gai Satay, has its origin in the southern parts of the country.

  Masaman Curry - A creamy soup with coconut milk, potato and chicken or other kind of meat.

  Yellow Curry - Different kind of dishes with yellow curry.

Rambutan fruit for sale

Common Menu

Even is every region and province has it's typical style, is there a couple of dishes and food who is the same in all of the country. Beef, pork and chicken is often served in small pieces. Rice can be served in different forms: boiled, fried, sticky and in soup, and the soup is often the base in a Thai breakfast. Together with the rice, noodles is the most common food in Thailand. As the rice, noodles is often served fried.

Many of the Thai dishes is flavored with curry. Red, green, yellow and panang is the most common curries in Thailand. A variation of filled omelet is often served as a main course, while a simplified version only made with egg and some times onion is served on the side. In Thailand they eat a lot of fruit. If it something that the Thai people don't have a lack of is vitamins and antioxidants. Small stands is often selling fresh fruit with sugar, salt and a chili mix. To the food you often drink water. Either on bottle or boiled (and then cold of) water in a jug. Even beer, soda or soda water is common drinks.

Western food is also available in Thailand
A MIXED GRILL PLATE - Photo by Jens W,

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