|Very Very Spicy Red Curry!|
So I haven't had a post about food yet. I have been here almost exactly three months and there has yet to be an entire entry decicated to food and food alone.
I've been sick the past couple of weeks and lost all enthusiasm for Thailand. Literally every ounce of positivity was suck out of me dementor style. I was tired and achy with a horrible runny nose, stopped up ears and a cough that quite possibly woke up my neighbors. Getting in front of 37 small Thai children acting happy and peppy was the last thing I wanted to do. But, thankfully I made it through the week and quarantined myself to my room and slept the weekend away. It is now Monday and I feel like a million bucks compared to weeks passed!
So I figured this would be a good time to remember some of the things I truely am happy and thankful for here in Thailand. It is easy to look at all the breathtaking pictures from weekend travels and think I'm living the life. But, in reality I live in pretty smelly and dirty town (sewage, trash, stray dogs galore) and my job is never really easy to figure out. It never stays the same and randomly I'm asked to come in and work on the weekends (nevermind the fact that I already have weekend reservations/plans...)
But enough of that. On the topic at hand: Food. Food and I have a love hate relationship here. Thais always use high sodium sauces, fish and shrimp paste, sugar and extremely low grade oil, but if you can look passed all of that you can find some really delicious food. The most amazing thing about Thailand's food is that kitchens are nonexistent. If you wanted to open up a restaurant here buy a wok and a rice cooker, put it on a set of wheels, buy a few plastic chairs and tables and you are good to go.
|Vegetarian Lady chopping ginger and bitter melon|
|Always: Sugar, Red Pepper & Soy Sauce w/ Chilies & Vinegar w/ Chilies (This was special w/ limes & peanuts!)|
As you will see as the post continues Thais are big on plastic bags, sticks and straws. The fruit stands are found all throughout the city and normally walk around ringing a bell--like an ice cream truck. They use incredibly sharp knifes and chop the fruit into this funnel like metal contraption and then slide the fruit straight into a bag, add your wooden stick and you are good to go! All for about 60 cents: you can get a whole pineapple, mango, papaya, guava or watermelon most times of the year here!
Next on to the coffee shops. Really I could make an entire post dedicated to just beverages that I love in the country: fruit juices, americanos and coconut water sums it up nicely. Drip coffee is almost nonexistent here. You either have nescafe or an espresso machine. Before I came I was told I'd never be more than 100 meters from an espresso machine. I thought "no way!" But truth be told, this is 100% true! Coffee shops are on every corner and sell every coffee, tea and fruit concoction possible all with a nice touch of condensed milk to call the beverage complete in the eyes of Thais. Thais are obsessed with condensed milk. It goes into all the above beverages as well as on waffles, in cookies and even sometimes in entree dishes. Really it is "when in doubt add condense milk!" Thankfully I've learned out to say no milk, no sugar and enjoy a black iced americano daily! (sometimes 2..)
|Favorite afternoon coffee spot|
|Favorite Morning Coffee Spot|
Below are the earlier mentioned fruit juices. Once again I've learned to ask for nit nawy (little) or no sugar and they transform into amazing afternoon snacks or yummy beach cocktails. My favorite combo so far is orange-carrot which I can get at the night market for about 10cents!
And this--best drink in Thailand: Fresh coconut juice! Yum. Can't go wrong here! Cold, delicious and afterwards you can use a spoon to scrape out all the delicious coconut meat inside!
One of our favorite spots is Padi Thai guy and his wife. This is him in action on our very first trip to the night market. His wife makes delicious som tum too! Som tum is spicy papaya salad. And as you can see she is conveniently making a "to go" bag version of som tum.
|Padi Thai Guy|
|Spicy Papaya Salad: All made in a wooden mortar and pestle (you can say how many red chilies you want to add in!)|
|Popular Stick Method: Waffles on a Stick|
|Keng on Milk Break!|
I will have to make another food post later on. I don't want overwhelm you too much! But, I have so much more I could talk about: strange Thai customs, delicious thai meals and of course Esther's infamous rice cooker meals. Don't worry everyone, I still have dinner parties! Instead of an amazing dining room table we sit on the floor using a sheet (the same one taken to many a outside picnic in Memphis.) and instead of a great gas range everything is prepared in one small contraption: the much beloved and hated rice cooker....