Maangchi kindly asked me to post a few recipes of food I cooked recently, so here it goes:
Hot and fresh papaya and shrimp salad - Som Dtum
Ingredients for 4 persons:
1 large vegetable papaya (see vegetable section)
3-5 fresh chili peppers
1 handful of dried shrimps
1 handful of peanuts
8 tbs of liquid palm sugar (how to get it liquid, see step 1); alternatively use soft brown sugar
4 tbs lime juice
4 tbs fishsauce
long, green Thai beans
3 cloves of garlic
additionally you can add:
black, salty crabs
A spicy yet refreshing salad for hot days
1. Melt 2 pieces or 4 tbs solid palm sugar in a small pan at low or medium heat, adding 4-5 tbs of water. The liquid should be a shiny and thick syrup.This procedure makes it easier to mix the sugar with the salad.
2. Peel the papaya, shred it with a shredder to thin stripes and soak them in cold water for the time you prepare the rest of the salad. This makes the papaya crunchier.
3. Cut the beans in one inch pieces. Throw away the endings.Take the chilis, beans and garlic and give them a good bash with mortar and pessel.
4. Add the shrimps and the peanuts and continue pounding.
5. Add the palm sugar, tomatoes, lime juice and fishsauce and continue bashing/grinding.
6. Last but not least add the shredded papaya and continue bashing. Use a bigger table spoon as a support tool. That way you can shift the salad in the mortar around a bit and it doesn't fall out while bashing.
1. If you cannot get any vegetable papayas, it also works well with carrots and colrabi. I would recommend coarse grinding most of the carrots and the rest cut to strips for extra crunch.
2. If your mortar doesn't have enough space for the whole papaya, just pound one handful, then take out the papaya and put it on a big plate or salad bowl, but leave the juice and other ingredients in. Then take another handful to pound, and so on, until the whole of the shredded papaya is used up. Pour over the rest of juices and ingredients from the mortar and mix well with the papaya salad.
3. If you can find black salted crab in a Thai super market, then add them to the salad. This makes the dish even more original. However, they are hard to find and the Som Dtum salad also tastes fantastic without them!
4. For vegetarians: Use light soy sauce instead of fish sauce and leave out the dried shrimps!
Vietnamese inspired salad with pork belly
Handful of Thai holy basil (Bai horahpah)
Chinese napa cabbage
Handful of Coriander
Handful of Spring onions
5 Black pepper corns crushed/grind
3 Tbs Fish sauce
1 Tbs Sesame oil
1 Tbs Dark Soysauce
1. In a deep pan bring 1 litre of water and 2 teaspoons of salt and pork belly to a boil. Then simmer for an hour. When finished take out the belly and let cool. This can be made a day before or anytime really. Cut lengthwise into 2 inch/ 4cm thick pieces. You can freeze the remaining cuts and use later.
2. Take one piece and cut into 3mm thick slices. Roughly chop a handful of coriander and Thai basil, crush pepper with mortar. Put all ingredients into a freezing bag, add the sesame oil fish sauce and soy sauce. Push out all air and seal bag. Give a good shake so that all pork is covered with the marinade. Leave in the fridge for a couple of hours, the longer the better.
3. Put pork belly and marinade into a bowl. Heat a pan but don't add any oil. With chop sticks or a tongue or fork take out each piece of pork belly and place individually into the hot pan. fry from both sides until brown and crisp outside. Place pieces onto chopping board and cut into strips. Put them back into the bowl with marinade.
4. Cut up spring onions into diagonal slices. Chop up some more Thai basil and coriander.Cut cucumber to sticks 2 inches long and about 3mm thick, and chop cabbage into 3mm thick slices.
5. Mix all well together with meat and marinade.
Serve with hot Jasmin rice.
For those who like it hot and spicy, chop 2 or more birds eye chilis and mix in well with the ingredients.
Thai-style roast chicken drums
3 Tbs Fishsauce
1 Tbs Dark say sauce
1 Tbs Sesame oil
1 Tbs ground coriander
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 star anis
Handful coriander chopped coarsely
up to 10 chicken drums
1. Put all ingredients in a freezing bag, seal air tight. leave to marinade in fridge for several hours. Same rule applies: the longer the better.
2. Preheat oven at 200 degrees celsius. Place chicken and marinade in a baking tray and put in the oven at 180ish degrees C for about 45 minutes. Check if cooked through by piercing into flesh with skewer or long thin knife. if juices are clear i.e. not bloody, then its ready to serve.
3. Serve with Jasmin rice and sweet Chili sauce for chicken (Nam Djim Gai).
Tastes great with the Carrot or Papaya salad. YUMM I am hungry now!!
Bon appetit xxx