Prices of food have been going up by about 20% and so it is now even more difficult for us to stay within budge for our Friday Lunchtime Thai Menu. The price of rice has also increased. At the local supermarket, in order to stop rice hoarding, a notice says that we are only allowed to buy two bags of rice per family. Though there doesn’t seem to be a shortage yet. This first dish is an old favourite sometimes called orange curry though really it should be called sour curry. The word “som” can mean both. The chili paste for this is made up from red chillies, chopped red shallots, shrimp paste and steamed fish. To cook, use either a chicken stock or a shrimp stock. Bring this to a boil and add the paste. Season with fish sauce and tamarind water (which makes it sour). You can also add some sugar if you like. Now add the shrimp and vegetables. This bowl cost us 25 baht.
A nice accompaniment to a sour curry is an omelette. It is easy to cook this yourself. However, this version is slightly different as it contains a surprise. It is a bit like a crepe wrapped around another ingredient. In English we would call it a stuffed omelette. When you cook the egg, you need to make it thin by spreading it all around the pan. Once it is cooked, remove from the pan and then prepare the ingredients. This can be anything you like. This one had minced pork with tomatoes, onion, string beans and mushrooms. Once cooked, put the mixture onto the middle of the egg sheet and fold it into a square. This cost 30 baht. It is not always meat inside so you will need to ask “sai a-rai”.
This sweet and sour dish is a favourite among foreign tourists. Sometimes you will find it is just stir-fried vegetables. This one has pork. Other ingredients include onion, cucumber, tomato and spring onion. Stir fry this as normal though don’t use garlic. Instead add some water. Once done add some ketchup and season with sugar, soy sauce and vinegar. To make the sauce thicker, mix some water with some wheat flour. This is easier enough to make yourself. The meat version cost us 30 baht. Like I said, prices are going up and this was only 25 baht before. But, it is still good value for money.
The dessert today is made from the roots of a cassava plant. First you have to prepare the syrup by mixing together sugar and water and boil slowly until all the sugar has dissolved. Strain this through a sieve and then bring it back to the boil once more. Reduce the heat and then add the cassava roots which have been peeled and cut into two inch sticks. Once it is cooked through it will have a glazed look as most of the syrup would have been absorbed by the roots. You top this with a mixture of coconut cream and salt that has been boiled together and then allowed to cool. I have never had this before as it never looked that attractive. It also looked very sweet. But small amounts was very tasty. Try some yourself. This dish cost only 20 baht.
Come back to paknam.com next Friday to find out what we ate next!