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Pattaya Daily News

19 September 2006 :: 11:09:19 am 21467

Thai Seasoning

Chilli Sauce: Thai name is Sauce Phrik This is mainly used as a dipping sauce for roasted chicken, deep fried meats and seafood. It comes in several intensities as regards heat, and the sweetness also varies. The sweeter varieties go well with chicken or seafood
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               Fish sauce: Thai name is Nham Pla
This brown, salty sauce with a characteristic fishy smell is an important ingredient in Thai cooking. Fish sauce provides high in protein as well as minerals and vitamins. It‘s made from small fish or small shrimp which has been salt-fermented for a long time. Then the juice is extracted and boiled. Good fish sauce should be clear and brownish in color. Add a bit more fish sauce at the end of cooking to adjust to taste and cook a minute longer

               Ground Chilli: Thai name is Phrik Pon
Ground Chilli, phrik pon. There are two types of ground chilli: ground spur chilli and ground hot chilli, the former being less hot than the latter. Both are dried and pan roasted before being ground, and are put up for sale in plastic bag. It is best to buy small quantities because, if kept long, the aroma is lost. Dried chilli is used in spicy chopped meat salads, spicy salads, sour and spicy soups, and in sauces. It is also a table condiment, used by Thais in the way Westerners use pepper

               Oyster Sauce: Thai name is Sauce Hoy Namg Rom or Nham mun Hoy
This sauce originated in China. Its richly flavored, dark brown sauce made from oysters with salt and water, thickened with cornstarch. It has a distinctive taste which is not at all fishy. It is extensively used as a seasoning for stir-fried vegetable, meat, seafood and noodle dishes

               Palm Sugar : Nham Tan Beep
Sweet is a key taste in Thai food, and many recipes use palm sugar. It is harvested from a sugar palm tree, produced from the sweet, watery sap that drips from cut flower buds. The sap is collected each morning and boiled in huge woks on the plantations until a sticky sugar remains. This is whipped and dropped in lumps on cellophane, or filled into containers. It has a distinctive flavour and is not so sweet as cane sugar. It is often sold as a solid cake

               Permented Soya Beans: Thai name is Tao Jiaw
Whole fermented yellow or black Soya beans may be labelled “Dow See” in oriental stores. They are sold in bottles and the English label probably says “Yellow Bean Sauce”. Fermented Soya beans are nutritious, strongly flavoured and salty. They replace salt completely in some Thai dishes

               Brown Sugar: Thai name is Nam Tan Sai Dang
Brown sugar is granulated sugar that is combined with molasses in varying quantities to yield golden, light, or dark brown sugar, with crystals varying from coarse to finely granulated. Store sugar indefinitely in an airtight container. In Thai cooking, usually used in desserts

               White Vinegar: Thai name is Nam Som Sai Chu
Vinegar, meaning literally “sour wine,” results when wine or another alcoholic liquid is allowed to ferment a second time, turning it acidic.

               Sea Salt : Gluah
Used for all cooking, sea salt is far superior in taste to mined salt. It aides in the grinding of dry ingredients in the mortar and pestle when making curries. Look for it in better supermarkets or health food stores

               Shrimp Paste: Thai name is Kapee
As with fish sauce, no true Thai kitchen is quite complete without Kapee — the dense, dark purplish and greyish brown, fermented shrimp paste with an intensely pungent odor, which most unaccustomed westerners find overpowering and even repulsive. If you think that fish sauce is quite enough and no way are you ever going to be talked into eating this rotten-smelling stuff, think again. Just about every delicious Thai curry you‘ve ever had, has Kapee as a vital component; this strong character blends beautifully with the robust flavors of chillies, garlic, fragrant spices, pungent roots and aromatic herbs to make each curry a delightful whole. In addition, there are many spicy soups, salads, sauces and stir-fries that would not be the same without its essence.

               Soy Sauce: Thai name is See Ewe
Two basic types of soy sauce are used in Thai cooking: salty and sweet. There are two versions of the saltier sauce. One is light coloured while the other is darker and thicker. The sweeter sauce comes in two strengths. One is thin and the other, which has been processed with molasses, is slightly thicker. Both are used with the salty soy sauce in noodle dishes or stir-fries. All soy sauces vary considerably in taste. Opened bottles should be stored in the refrigerator.

               Sweet Chilli Sauce: Nam Jim or Sauce Phrik Wan
A sweet and mildly spicy condiment made with handpicked, ripe whole chili peppers and Thai seasonings. Although this delicious sauce is made with chilies, it is not spicy hot. It has a pleasantly sweet flavor. It is used in place of ketchup or any chili sauce. It is ideal as a dip, sauce, or dressing for roasted chicken, deep fried meats, grilled meats, seafood, salads and fried appetizers.

               Tamarind Juice : Thai name is Nham Ma Kam Peak
Tamarind juice is one of the main souring agents in Thai cooking. It is both fruity and refreshing and has a tart and sour flavour without being bitter. It is an essential ingredient of Thai hot and sour soups. In Thailand fresh tamarind – the fruit pods of a semi evergreen, tropical tree – are widely available, but in the West you are more likely to encounter tamarind in a com pressed block. This looks similar to a block of com pressed dates and the pulp tastes a little like sour dates. (The word tamarind means “date of India”.) Tamarind juice can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Tamarind is also available in dried slices, as a concentrate and as a paste. If you are unable to find tamarind, you can use lemon juice instead, but you‘ll need twice as much as the flavour won‘t be quite the same

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : PDN staff   Category : Eating

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