Thai food ain’t about simplicity. It’s about the juggling of disparate elements to create a harmonious finish. Like a complex musical chord it’s got to have a smooth surface but it doesn’t matter what’s happening underneath. Simplicity isn’t the dictum here, at all.”
Ever wonder what makes Thai cuisine so special? It’s the meticulous and measured play of herbs and spices that makes it truly exquisite. From lemongrass, Thai holy basil, shrimp paste, kaffir lime, to galangal, coconut milk, fish sauce and a host of local condiments that cook up a traditional Thai delicacy. One of the best things about Thai cuisine is the flexibility it offers in its preparations, for instance, you have the fiery red meat curry which can easily be transformed into a vegetarian version without compromising much on the authentic taste.
Rice is a staple in Thailand, a traditional accompaniment with Thai curries, soups, fried vegetables that can often be replaced with noodles. If you ever happen to be in Thailand, you shouldn’t miss out on their sticky rice or puffed rice cakes.
Thai food borrows heavily from China, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Laos, Burma, France, Portugal and other neighbouring countries including India. The Portuguese would take away the credit to introduce chillies to Thailand whereas noodles and steel wok were brought in by the Chinese.
There is a lot of stewing, marinating, baking and grilling that goes into Thai cuisine. The culinary methods of frying, stir frying and deep-frying were introduced by the Chinese. One of the most interesting techniques widely followed in Thai cooking is the pounding or coarsely bruising of herbs instead of chopping them. This ensures all essential oil to seep into the preparation infusing the meal with fresh aroma of herbs.
— David Thompson, author of the award-winning cookbook, Thai Food