Tag Archives: Fish sauce

Gluten Free Mu NamTok ( waterfall pork)

One of my favourite Thai dishes served with glutinous rice…Nam doc Moo

It is quick and easy to make for lunch and although the name glutinous rice infers it has gluten it does not… it means sticky here. The rice is gluten free.

Ingredients:

Serves 2.

200 gm Pork loin.

2 shallots sliced thinly

Hand full coriander chopped

Mint a big handfull, stripped for the stem

A tbsp of ground roasted rice

1-3 tsp dried chilli

2 cheeks of lime

1-2 tbsp Fish Sauce

2 spring onions finely sliced ( optional)

Firstly cook pork on a griddle or BBQ until just cooked allow to rest before slicing.

Thinly slice shallots.

Mix with coriander and mint leaves. Thinly slice pork and add to dish with shallots, mint and coriander. Also, add any juice from the meat. Add fish sauce, dried chillies, roasted rice and lime juice then gently combine and TASTE… Adjust seasoning if required.  Taste!

Serve with Sticky rice and a dish of washed Thai vegetables.

The meat for this dish can also be sliced thinly and cooked in a little water which a lot of Thais do…I prefer mine griddled I think it has more taste…

N.B: HOW TO DRY ROAST THE RICE.

Heat a small pan and add a handful of glutinous rice, stir to prevent it burning until the rice has coloured slightly a nice light brown, then remove from the heat and grind in pestle and mortar…Do not grind to a powder it needs to be a little coarse as it gives taste and texture to a dish. It will keep in a sealed container for about 6 weeks.

Until next time stay safe, have fun and laugh a lot as it is the best medicine you can get and free…

 

 

 

 

 

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Gluten free..Larb Moo ( Thai Pork Salad)

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Thai food is a great choice for glutenfree and dairy-free eaters because it is rice-based and uses a lot of coconut milk. … Traditional Thai soy sauce is glutenfree, but just be careful when eating out as restaurants may use wheat-based Chinese soy sauce.

Thai food is low on carbs,  includes lots of fresh vegetables and herbs and most dishes are cooked very quickly so everything retains its colour and flavour, in fact, preparation most times takes longer than the actual cooking.

This Larb recipe can be made using chicken or Pork. I have used Pork Mince for this.

Larb Moo.

Ingredients: Serves 1-2 people.

200 gm Pork or chicken mince.

3 shallots finely sliced.

2 spring onions finely sliced green tops as well.

A handful of fresh Mint, pick the leaves from stem and tear the leaves into large pieces( mine is a big handful)  I love mint.

A handful of fresh coriander chopped.

A few Thai Basil leaves for the decoration.

I Lime .  use half to a whole lime juice depending on personal taste.

Dried chillies..dry roasted in a pan and grind in pestle and mortar.

1 large tbsp toasted rice.( recipe below)

1-2tbsp Fish Sauce.

Small amount palm sugar….I use it sparingly.

Method:

Using a small saucepan dry cook the mince, I add a small amount of water to stop it from sticking.

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Stir until cooked, remove the pan from the heat.

Stir in toasted rice, sm amount palm sugar, chilli( as desired) start with 1 tsp and once all ingredients added ..taste and add more if required.

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Stir in the mint and coriander, shallots and spring onions, stir well but carefully.

Add fish sauce and half of the lime juice.

Taste! if required add more chilli, fish sauce and or lime juice and Taste again as lime and chilli. Put in a serving dish.

Garnish with Thai Basil leaves.

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Serve with steamed boiled rice /Thai sticky rice or if you don’t want to eat rice it is lovely served in lettuce cups.

As an accompaniment serve with sliced cucumber, sliced white cabbage, green beans and Thai basil leaves.

Thai’s eat a lot of raw vegetables with Larb which is why it’s a fairly healthy meal and if chicken is used it has even fewer calories.

It is an ideal dish if you are watching the calories as are many Thai dishes.

NB: To make dried rice mix, take a thick bottomed pan put it on a medium to low heat, cover bottom with uncooked sticky rice( if you don’t have) normal rice will do. Stir until rice turns a golden brown colour, tip into pestle and pound until powdery but slightly coarse.

N.B. Glutinous rice is glutenfree. The misleading name simply comes from the fact that glutinous rice gets glue-like and sticky when cooked. … It all comes down to starch content.

You can store the rice in a small container and it will keep for 6-8 weeks…

 

I hope you enjoy this dish as much as I do…I love this salad.

Until next time stay safe, have fun and laugh a lot as laughter is the best medicine.

Don’t forget my next collaboration with Sally from Smorgasbord Health 2017 which is an amalgamation of Health written by Sally and recipes by me …Last weeks was the Carrot from Afganistan and this Wednesdays post is Honey …..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The answer is no: glutinous rice is glutenfree. The misleading name simply comes from the fact that glutinous rice gets glue-like and sticky when cooked.

Papaya Salad…. one of Thailands iconic dishes.

Papaya Salad Som Tam

Papaya Salad or as it is known here, Som Tam.

One of my favorite dishes which is eaten with nearly every meal and sold everywhere on markets, by the roadside with lovely chicken or fish and a dish that I would say every visitor to Thailand will sample and remember.

You will see the trees growing everywhere in gardens, by the roadside and waste land we have at least  6 in our garden alone and not sure how many on the farm and have planted one outside our house so that anyone passing can help themselves.

The papaya tree laden with fruit:

Papaya on tree

 

For those of you who are not lucky enough to be able to buy green Papaya then here is the recipe for you and some alternatives if you can’t buy green papaya.

Ingredients:

A Green Papaya…1 papaya unless you are making a huge dish full will make at least 3 two serving portions. If you keep it covered or put in a plastic bag it keeps very well in the fridge and doesn’t go brown like some fruits and vegetables once peeled.

1 Carrot

Handful cherry Tomatoes or 2/3 med sized tomatoes.

2 long green beans.

Dried shrimp (optional)

1 Lime

4/5 birds eye chillies

Fish Sauce.

Sm amount of palm sugar about a half teaspoon.

Method:

Shred green Papaya and Carrot.

Cut tomatoes up roughly in smallish pieces or cherry tomatoes in half.

Put the chilli, sugar and little fish sauce in pestle and mortar and pound away.

Add papaya, carrots, tomatoes and dried shrimps ( a bit at a time) and keep pounding.

Add lime juice and the lime cheeks, peel ..all of it….. a little more pounding, stir and serve.

Tip 1: TASTE, Taste and taste again because it is about balancing those hot, salty, sweet, sour tastes of Thai Food and your personal taste.

I find that in papaya salad the heat of the chilli is more pronounced so if you only like a little heat start with half a chilli or 1….and TASTE……lime juice and fish sauce the same… taste……..Thai food is all about balancing of the sweet, sour, spicy, salty flavours so once again TASTE as it’s very personal and individual…

I love fish sauce so I am probably..well… nought probable about it… I am….bit free and easy with it…..but that’s my taste and maybe not yours ……I am now becoming in danger of overusing a word…but TASTE…….

Tip 2: If you cannot get Green Papaya where you live then you can use shredded Cucumber or Swede as a substitute. Both are good and particularly with the swede unless you are a connoisseur of Papaya Salad then it would be hard to call.

Another variation on the Papaya is substituting shredded  Green Bananas ..I have not seen it made everywhere… it seems to be more regional but it was good, very good.

I hope you enjoy my little recipes they are not all precisely measured but just how we do it here ….whatever we have goes in the pot or pestle i.e the addition of crab ( in its shell) and yes you do get mucky fingers because again it’s eating with what you were born with.

Som Tam with Phla

Oh, and you serve Papaya Salad with Khao Neow (sticky rice), Chicken or fish..fresh veggies of your choice….

Whatever you fancy and this is one of my favorites and so many variations..but I have found me a little man who makes it just the way I like it…. Sometimes I just want to eat and the beauty of Thai street food is it is just like it has come from your own kitchen…. How fresh does that  Papaya look? Freshly shredded…

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So when I am on my morning walk …I tell my favourite papaya man I will be 30 mins or however long I think I may be..pick up my fresh coconut juice and then my Som Tam and maybe some freshly cooked chicken on the way back home …

I am so blessed that I have such lovely food on my doorstep.

I hope you enjoyed this post if you did please share or reblog as I am sure at least one of your friends would also love the recipe for an authentic Papaya salad and sharing is caring…

It is simple food at it’s best…

Until next time stay safe, have fun AND laugh a lot as laughter is the best medicine and IT’S FREE so please also do me a favour..ASK a question because as you know….I love it when I hear someone question something, please don’t be a follower be a questioner and ask!

And don’t forget if you haven’t already read it…Please look at my new weekly collaboration with Sally from Smogasbord.Health…Healthy recipes made from scratch ( from moi) and great health information on the ingredients from Sally  and how they benefit you and your families health and well being…All in one post…How good is that????

Please click here    It is fun and informative…HAVE A LOVELY WEEKEND!

 

 

 

 

 

The Tamarind Tree

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The Tamarind is a leguminous tree which grows in tropical climates. Originally from Africa, it now grows in tropical regions around the globe being most common in South Asia and Mexico.

Its fruits are called an indehiscent legume which means that it doesn’t open naturally when it reaches maturity. Inside the fruit are a few large seeds and a sticky, tart pulp which when dried is even more tart.

shelled tamarind Fruit

The largest producer today is India although Thailand and Mexico are major producers.

It is used in everything from desserts to wonderful chutneys. It can be eaten fresh or dried it is sweet but a little tart and a small amount goes a long way.

The pulp can be eaten alone or with a little sugar to make it less tart and to give it a much more mellow flavour.

I use it a lot in cooking and I think my favourite dishes are:

 Tamarind prawns and beef rendang. The addition of tamarind to your cooking takes your dish to another level.

Beef Rendang is a recipe given to me by my friend Mamik and it is very nice and the beef is amazing. It is also my go-to recipe if I want that special dish to impress.

Ingredients:

2” Galangal

2” Ginger

1kg beef (Bottom Round)

1-litre  Coconut Milk (3 sm tins and made to one litre with water)

Grind together and put on one side, 1 tbsp Coriander seeds, 1 tsp Cumin seeds and 1 tsp white peppercorns.

2 Star Anise.

Half cup toasted coconut (pound in pestle until oil is released and it looks like a paste.)

1 Turmeric Leaf (Leave leaf whole but tear side to stem along leaf) this releases the flavour.

2 stems lemongrass crushed along the stem.

2 Lime leaves.

Soak 1-2 tsp Tamarind pulp in a little water and set aside for later.

Curry Paste:

Blitz the next 4 ingredients together to make the curry paste.

2cm Fresh Turmeric.

10 Shallots

5 Cloves Garlic

10 large red chillies (deseed if you want a milder curry)

To make Curry:

Cut beef into large cubes.

Put a tbsp oil of your choice in a cooking pot (I use a wok). Add Curry paste and cook and stir for 5 mins, add beef and stir to combine. Add coconut milk/water mixture and stir to combine.

Slowly bring to a gentle simmer, add torn turmeric leaf, lemongrass and lime leaves and star anise.

Cover pan and cook until meat is tender at least 3 hrs on a low simmer, stirring occasionally.

Add the ground coconut paste about half hour before the end of the cooking time and also the tamarind liquid and this is when the magic happens and the taste goes from just another curry to something wonderful.

When the meat is cooked and tender remove the turmeric leaf and lemon grass stalks although if we are not eating the curry until the next day I leave them and remove them before we eat the curry.

This curry should traditionally have a very thick paste and is also best eaten the next day to allow the flavours to develop.

However, as Europeans prefer a runnier sauce you can choose not to reduce down as much.

Enjoy!

 Tamarind is also great as a marinade for meat as it breaks down and tenderises tougher cuts of meat. It is used to make jams and syrups it is also one of the secret ingredients of Lea & Perrins  Worcestershire sauce which is a fermented sauce which has any uses.

Great in smoothies mango and tamarind smoothie is very nice it also has many other culinary uses.

This little dip is a recipe from Bali very easy to make but made more special by the addition of tamarind.

Called Rujak sauce it is lovely with mangoes.

Take 200gm of palm sugar shaved.

15 gm of tamarind flesh and 5 tbsp of water leave to infuse for 5 mins and then drain and keep the tamarind flavoured water.

6 or more Thai chillies.

1/4tsp shrimp paste and 1/4tsp salt.

Blitz all these ingredients together and you have fiery little sauce.

Health Benefits of Tamarind.

This picture shows the green pods of the Tamarind tree before they ripen and what a magnificent tree it is.

green unripe TAMARIND PODS

Tamarind like many fruits and vegetables has a long history of healing and aiding stomach disorders and is used as a laxative.

Tamarind Preparations are used for fevers, sore throats, inflammation of joints and sunstroke. The leaves dried or boiled are made into poultices to help reduce swollen joints, sprains, boils, haemorrhoids and conjunctivitis.

I hope you enjoyed reading about this rather plain brown pod with the capacity to elevate your food to something else.

Images are my own or from Pixabay and require no attribution.

Thank you for reading this post I hope you enjoyed it…If you did please reblog or share and let me know what you do with Tamarind in the comments if you use it….It would be lovely to chat with you…I always reply….

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.

 

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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.

 

 

Not just a Crab Sandwich!

EEEEEEK! She has that look and she has baguettes and I have heard her say….It’s the letter “C”  THIS WEEK.  I thought she was sticking to chillies?????  Surely she is not putting me between that baguette and with a Chilli! crab-1934857_1280

 

Ingredients:

6 individual sized baguettes or wholemeal bread or your own choice of bread/roll.

300gm of fresh picked white crab meat…..yikes that’s me!

I red chilli finely chopped, you can remove seeds….she so is and in bed with a chilli! And I can’t scuttle away she has taped my claws together.

5tbsp mayo.

1 tsp fresh lime juice.

2 tbsp flat leaf parsley finely chopped.

50gm rocket

Butter to spread on rolls.

Salt.

Lets’s Cook!

Butter your rolls or bread of choice…..I sometimes use cream cheese.

Mix the chilli and lime juice into the mayo.

Gently fold in the parsley and the white crab meat.

Taste and season with a little salt..the salt brings out the flavours.

Put the crab mixture on the baguette and top with rocket.

Enjoy!

I hope you enjoyed this bit of fun and just to reassure no crabs were hurt by me…..

 

Thank you for reading this and my tongue in cheek humour.

 

If you loved it please reblog or share away 🙂