Tag Archives: Fish sauce

Salt Farming in Northern Thailand.

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Driving to Nong Khai towards the Mekong we suddenly started to see lots of roadside stalls selling salt and then I remembered nothing grew here because the land was so salty …No rice…Nothing!

Proud of their salt producing heritage there is now a 3 day Salt Festival with talks, educational displays and the most beautiful sculptures crafted from salt.

Before I show and tell you about the salt I will show you how I use salt …Which produces the most succulent fish you have every tasted and eaten with Som Tam Green Papaya) Salad and Sticky Rice ( Kow Neow) is one of the most amazing meals you could wish to eat.

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Just take 3/4 stems of lemon grass and tie in a knot, stuff it in the cavity of the fish and then roll the fish in sea salt do not descale the fish as it will not stick. Put on a BBQ and cook until fish is just cooked, nice and juicy turning the fish a few times this takes about 30/40 mins and you will have the most succulent fish you have ever tasted.

How is the salt produced:

Thailand’s unique cuisine with its sweet, sour, bitter, spicy and salty tastes which combined make a Thai meal so memorable. Salty eggs, fish, salt are used in many dishes and the almost iconic Thai fish sauce takes pride of place on every table. A meal would not be complete without salt or fish sauce being used in every dish or as a condiment.

Do not try to put salt in a traditional western salt grinder or shaker as due to the humidity here it will just clog or cause the grinders cogs to rust.

Used firstly as a preservative before there were fridges salt has become as essential as breathing.

Here in Thailand it is not only used in food but in the spa industry. Now, who hasn’t been to Thailand and hasn’t had a traditional Thai massage?

From popular skin exfoliating, scrub massages it has great anti-bacterial properties and helps to prevent itching and provides relief from insect bites and stings.

Add lemon grass to your salt and a massage will let all your stress and jet lag just fade away.

How is salt made? 

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The ponds are flooded with salt water and left for about 10 days until the sun has evaporated the water leaving the salt, which is then collected and carried away in shoulder baskets to be bagged ready for sale.

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There is very little if any shade on these salt flats to protect the workers from the sun and it is hard heavy work.

 

Health Benefits of Salt.

For years  I have been warned about the use of too much salt whereas here because of the heat and humidity I have used more salt in my cooking and diet.

I have changed the salt I use and either use Pink Himalayan Salt or more recently as we live close to the above salt flats I use the mineral salt fresh from there.

The taste is vastly different from the salt I used to buy and I use less as it is saltier but since living here my Blood pressure is now normal…and for those who know me I have never been normal…lol..but it is.

Asians have for many years believed that we have an energy body as well as a physical body. All of our glands, organs, blood and skin consist of cells. They believe that our health depends on the health of those cells. Different cells require more or less of cell salts e.g nerve cells require larger amounts of cell salts but blood cells carry a higher amount of certain cell salts.

Hence salt plays a larger role in the diet in  Asian countries as they believe cell salts provide a rebalancing of the body to enable its natural disease function which controls the bodies mechanism to function fully.

I am finding northern Thailand such a lovely place to live the people are friendly and I am discovering so many fruits, vegetables and ancient crafts which are still being used and passed down to generation after generation.

Thank you for reading and please feel free to share or reblog.

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All images are from my own private photo collection I have no problem if anyone uses them as long as you just ask my permission.

 

 

Spicy red curry squid.

 

spicy squid

This lovely spicy squid curry is not for the faint-hearted even I found it a tad hot.

But if you like a bit of heat, then this is just the curry for you.

This recipe is for two people but it is quite easy to double up the ingredients, it is also very quick to cook so prepare all your ingredients first and then in as much time as it takes to cook your rice you will have a beautiful curry.

Ingredients:

200 gm squid cleaned and cut into rectangles I normally score mine with a sharp knife( it just makes them look prettier).

1 shallot sliced

2 cloves of garlic crushed and chopped

1 tbsp Thai red curry paste

1 tomato cut into 8

A handful of pea eggplants( optional)

Sm piece of fresh ginger finely cut into slivers or cubes

Black pepper

Half tbsp of coconut oil

200 ml coconut milk

1/2 to 1 tbsp fish sauce.

Sm bunch of Thai basil

Ok…Let’s Cook!

Heat the oil in a wok until it is very hot and add garlic, shallots and curry paste, stir fry for 30 seconds.

Add tomatoes, ginger and pea eggplants if used and stir-fry for 1 minute.

Add squid and pepper and stir-fry for a further 1 minute.

Add coconut milk and fish sauce stir well and cook on low heat for 2 minutes, stir in Thai basil.

Serve with steamed rice and……. Enjoy!

If you love squid then I have a recipe for salt and pepper squid  https://niume.com/post/325935   and squid salad   https://niume.com/post/78755    over on my Niume page.

Until next time stay safe and laugh a lot.