X No Thanks

Thailand's Varied Culinary Heritage

by Travelbag on 19 January 2015, 14:01PM Thailand's Varied Culinary Heritage

Thai cuisine has for over a decade well established itself within the international culinary scene; the sheer number of restaurants sprung up in the major capitals of the world attests to its phenomenal popularity.

 
Offering a variety of flavours and tastes, with enthusiastic use of herbs, spices and market-fresh ingredients, Thai food is famed for its balance and harmony. Ann exciting combination of five fundamental tastes – hot, sweet, sour, salty and bitter, brings contrasting yet complimenting flavours and textures to each dish. Coconut milk, seafood and fruit also play a key part in Thai cuisine.


Although considered as a single cuisine, Thai food is better described according to the country’s four main regions; North, Northwest, Central Plains and South. With cultural and ethnic infusions over centuries, regional cuisines have absorbed some Eastern and Western influences while maintaining their own unique flavours and characters.


The fertile plain along the Chao Phraya River, Thailand’s traditional heartland, is home to various dishes of foreign influences. For centuries inspirations from the Middle East Europe, China, Japan, Persia and Portugal had contributed to making distinctive dishes that later were transformed to suit Thai tastes.


Their signatures are now evident in several dishes such as Phat Phak Bung Fai Saeng (stir fried water spinach), Kaeng Khiao Wan (green curry), or even the famous Phat Thai.


Thais living in the Central Plains region, unlike those in the North and Northeast, prefer fragrant steamed rice. Also, Sino-Thai food has bar far become popular in major cities like Bangkok, especially in the form of numerous noodle dishes. 


As unique as its culture the food from the North, where steamed glutinous rice is preferred. Traditionally, glutinous rice is kneaded into small balls with the fingers. Reflecting Burmese influences, northern curries are generally milder than those of the central and southern regions. Popular dishes under such influences include Kaeng Hang Le (traditional pork curry), Khao Soi (curry broth with egg noodles and meat, topped with shallots and slices of lime), Sai-Ua (spicy pork sausage), to name but a few. Visitors to the North should not miss Khantok dinner, the traditional form of meal during which diners sit around a small low table.


The Northeast, locally referred to as I-san, is perhaps the least known region to foreign  tourists. But this only serves to enhance its allure. I-san food is highly seasoned, often cooked with herbs and spices. Influences of neighbouring Laos are evident in several dishes including So Tam (green papaya salad), Lap (spicy minced meat or chicken salad) and Kai Yang (barbecued chicken). Freshwater fish and shrimp, usually fermented, are also popular. Like residents of the North, I-san people prefer glutinous rice, which sometimes is used as a sweet.


The South houses not only well-known destinations, but also hidden treasures in its renowned culinary treasure chest. Local ingredients play and important role in developing the distinct aroma and flavours of southern cuisine. As fresh seafood from the surrounding waters is abundant, fish, prawns, lobsters, crab, squid, scallops, clams and mussels are commonly used in main dishes. In addition to cashew nuts stir-fried with chicken and dried chilies, a pungent flat bean called sator adds an exotic flavour to many southern dishes. Coconut also plays a prominent role in many dishes and local sweets. Other foreign influences, namely Malaysian, Indonesian and Chinese, can be found in such dishes as Kaeng Mussaman (a mild curry seasoned with cardamom), Khao Yam Nam Budu (rice salad with southern fish sauce), Kaeng Lueang (yellow curry), Kaeng Tai Pla (spicy curry of fish vescera) and Sa Te (skewered barbecued meat with spicy peanut sauce).


Copy provided by Tourism Authority of Thailand


Visiting Costa Rica: Our Holiday Guide

Read More

Indonesian Islands that are Alternatives to Bali

Read More

New Travelbag Shop Opens in Chester

Read More

The Best Routes for a New Zealand Road Trip

Read More
Post of the month
by Tourism Australia More

Email sign up

Register to receive holiday offers, cheap flights deals, hotel offers and more.

Travelbag Travel/Leisure London

01 Jan 00:00 Read More
Travelbag's Twitter
Common Tags
3 days in 48 hours in 5 Reasons Abu Dhabi Activities Adventure Holiday Africa Alaska America Antigua Architecture Argentina asia Auckland Australasia Australia bahamas Bahrain Bali Bangkok Barbados Beach Holidays Beaches Bolivia Bora Bora Botswana Brazil Caibbean California Cambodia Canada Cancun Cape Town Caribbean celebrity Central America Chicago Chile China City Breaks Coffee Competition Costa Rica Cruise Holidays Cruises Cuba culture Dining Dominican Republic Dubai Ecuador Europe Events Family Holidays Festivals Fiji Florida food Food Trip Gold Coast Greece Hanoi Hawaii hiking Ho Chi Minh City holiday reading Honeymoon Hong Kong India Indian Ocean Indian Ocean Luxury Holidays Indonesia Jamaica Japan Jordan Kenya Koh Samui Krabi kuala lumpur Laos las vegas Latin America Literature los angeles Luxury Holidays Macau Majorca Malaysia Maldives Mauritius Melbourne Mexico Miami Middle East money Montreal music Myanmar New York New Zealand Northen Territory Oman Orlando Pattaya Perth Perth Beaches Peru Phuket Qatar Quebec Queensland Queenstown quiz Rail Travel Ras Al Khaimah Reading on holiday Royal Jubilee Safari Samoa Scuba Diving Self-Drive Seychelles Shopping Sightseeing Sightseeing Trip Singapore snorkelling South Africa South America South Australia Sri Lanka St Lucia survey Sydney Tahiti Tasmania Texas Thailand Things To Do Tokyo Top 5 Things to Do Toronto tour Travel Travelbag trekking UAE UK United States USA USA Roadtrip Vancouver Vietnam Virginia Western Australia whale watching Wildlife Winter Sun
Archive
  • 2019
  • 2018
    • December
    • November
    • October
    • July
    • June
    • May
    • April
    • March
    • February
    • January
  • 2017
    • December
    • November
    • October
    • September
    • August
    • July
    • June
    • March
    • February
  • 2016
    • December
    • November
    • October
    • September
    • August
    • July
    • June
    • May
    • April
    • March
    • February
    • January
  • 2015
    • December
    • November
    • October
    • September
    • August
    • July
    • June
    • May
    • April
    • March
    • February
    • January
  • 2014
    • December
    • November
    • October
    • September
    • August
    • July
    • June
    • May
    • April
    • March
    • February
    • January
  • 2013
    • December
    • November
    • October
    • September
    • August
    • June
    • May
    • April
    • March
    • February
  • 2012
    • November
    • October
    • September
    • August
    • July
    • May
    • April
    • March
    • February
    • January
Please Wait...


We use cookies Read more

Cookies: We use cookies to improve your experience on this website. By continuing to browse our website, you are agreeing to use our site cookies. See our cookie policy for more information on cookies and how to manage them.