Sunday, August 22, 2010

Goo-ay TEA Oh....

Sa-Wat-Dee-Kha!   Been young ay, na kha?

Okay so most of you know I used to live in Siam, now called Thailand.  I spent
3 years there, ate everything imaginable, learned to read, write and speak Thai.
It was an awesome adventure, and I owe my lovely Thai friends there for putting up
with me.  

One of the wonderful things about Thailand is the sumptious food.  Although people
there live a very simple lifestyle and most live at our poverty level or under, they manage
to make food that will absolutely delight your tastebuds.   Savory hot soups that surprise with
a sour twist, cool sweet tropical fruits that sell for a dime, spices that will cause even the stouthearted to
almost faint (another story!), curries that are so creamy and delectable, and the fabled lemongrass which lends a citrusy and cool fragrant flavor to many dishes.  These, my friends are the wonders of "Aahaarn Thai", Thai food.  

If a dish is delicious, you compliment your hostess, saying   "A roy Maak"; meaning very delicious.   When you simply cannot eat another bite, you say, "Imm leew!"  The older or one who has the most authority pays the bill, and the person who invites pays the bill.   Fortunately for us, the bill was always cheap; we ate for about .75 a day!    Amazing!

Thailand is a very colorful place filled with smiles, tropical beauty, wild orchids and lovely floating markets.  The fruits and fauna are beutiful beyond my ability to describe.  Here is a typical market scene:

Okay so!  Would you like a brief lesson in Thai cooking today?  I thought so!

We ate this soup nearly every day in Thailand.  Goo-ay TEA oh.  

Let's get to it, shall we?  

Prep Time:  1 1/2 hours

One half of a chicken
6 - 8 cups of water
Chicken Stock Powder
Fish Sauce
Ramen Noodles chicken flavor (or glass noodles but we like Ramen)
More Fish Sauce
Crushed red chili peppers

  1. Boil the chicken in the water with the stock powder or buillion cubes.  I like it strong!
  2. While boiling, add vinegar and sugar to taste.   It should taste sweet and sour.   Keep adding until it does.  Approx. 1/2 C. white vinegar and approx 4 tablespoons sugar.  Sorry, I'm a right brain cook.
  3. Add fish sauce to taste. Fish sauce is what they use instead of table salt.  YOU DON'T LIKE FISH SAUCE?  Stop the bus and get off right now!  I GA RAUNTEEE you, you have eaten fish sauce if you ever ate anything Thai.  So smile and get over it.
  4. Chop coarsely about 6 large cloves of fresh garlic and saute until golden brown. I know, it's a pain, but oh man!  It's worth it!   It only takes 5 minutes, don't wimp out and use the powder! Drain garlic on a paper towel.  Save the garlicky oil for later use; it makes great fajita saute sauce.  
  5. Cook and debone the chicken.  Skim some but not all fat.  Fat = flavor!  Never trust a skinny cook anyways.  
  6. Add chicken, shredded back to the soup dish.
  7. Chop some fresh cilantro.
  8. Boil the Ramen noodles for 2 minutes, add into the soup mixture and then serve into bowls.  
  9. Top with chopped cilantro, crushed red chilis, and more fish sauce.
  10. Use chopsticks and a spoon to eat.   
  11. This goes great with this that you can pick up at any Krogers:
Crunchy rolls from Kroger Sushi Deli.... See that ginger? I could eat that all day long!

.   Mmmm mmmm Good!

Let me know how you like this dish! 

Here is my daughter scarfing away; it's her favorite Thai dish~

And this was her in Thailand at the Bangkok airport at 2:30 AM after traveling 24 hours to get there in 2004:

Is she cute or WHAT?   

And, if you are just not able to jump on the next jumbo jet and fly away into the Siam sunset, why don't you try this fresh bar of Thai Market Soap?   Your skin will thank you, and you will feel almost like you might be walking through a Thai market on a soi in Bangkok, Thailand, the Land of Smiles!

Until next time, my friend, SaWatDeeKha, and Bon Appetit!


lindsey brooke said...

great post kelly! i thoroughly enjoyed! i'm going to have to try making this sometime... :)

♪essica said...

I'm totally gonna try it. I'll let you know once I have all the ingredients and I'm ready to go for it!

Anne-Marie said...

I would love to go to Thailand someday. Thanks for the beautiful insight (and recipe). It's amazing that you lived there for 3 years! What an experience!

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