|For ages 10 and up|
"Unique is the word for the cooking of Thailand. Thai food is wonderful to smell, exciting to see, and delicious to eat. The flavors of Thai cooking range from mild to almost searingly hot, with plenty of dishes falling somewhere in between. Many Thai consider food to be an art form. They have borrowed and adapted ideas from other countries to create their own distinctive cuisine."
"Fresh fruit is the typical sweet in this tropical country, where fruit trees produce much lush fruit. Mangoes, rambutan, bananas, melons of all sorts, mangosteen, papayas, lychee, pineapple, and durian are widely available."
I absolutely love fruit platters and especially enjoy eating and cooking Thai food. Grilled marinated chicken is a favorite, along with stir-fry vegetables with Pad Thai. What's your favorite?
Now, the Tai cuisine is known for its combinations of sweet, sour, and salty flavors. Here are a few "sauce samples"from the book:
Sweet and Sour Sauce
1 c. sugar
1/4 c. white vinegar
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. water
1 tbsp. ketchup
1/4 tsp. crushed pepper flakes
In a large saucepan, combine all ingredients. Stir constantly over high heat until sugar dissolves. Makes 1 1/2 cups.
1 c. peeled and thinly sliced cucumber
1/2 c. white vinegar
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
Place sliced cucumbers in a small bowl. in a medium saucepan, combine vinegar, sugar, and salt and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and let cool, uncovered, to room temperature.
Nam Pla Prig
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
4 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. fresh lime or lemon juice, or 4 tbsp. white vinegar.
4 tbsp. fish sauce
2 tbsp. water
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Stir to dissolve sugar. (If sauce is too salty or too strong, add more water.) Serve at room temperature in individual bowls. (Nam pla prig will keep for up to 2 weeks refrigerated in a slightly covered glass container.)
The Thai belief is that long, whole noodles bring long life. I love learning about other cultures. I am so fortunate to have a wonderful mother-in-law, whom I dearly love, that is 93.
A popular children's book you may be familiar with is
The Seven Silly Eaters. It’s a fun, and sometimes a bit over-the-top, book about life in a bustling household.
“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis