Friday, February 3

Thailand 2011 - The Freshest Foods

This is a post of the best and freshest foods I had on our Thailand trip. Freshest seafood, drinks, and fruits. Enjoy these mouth watering eats!

Squid grilled on a boat at the Amphawa Floating Market. Now this is what I call fresh off the boat! Best squid rings I've ever had plus one of the spiciest but tastiest dipping sauces. I regret not trying the crab and shrimp also.

Steamed clams with dipping sauce similar to above from Siam Paragon Mall food court.  These clams were really sweet and juicy. Quite possibly the best clams I've ever had and the preparation is simply a quick steam.

Starfruit slices in a cup. It can also be blended into a smoothie but I like my fruits whole.

Gooseberry aka chum ruot in Vietnamese. In Google searching the American name of this fruit, I discovered that there is a Vietnamese Wikipedia. These are usually pickled or preserved in a sweet red brine typically eaten around the Lunar New Year. I love the preserved versions and thought that the fresh ones would be just as good. WRONG! They are tart and sour. Oh well, at 33cents for this bag, I didn't waste much money.

Oh how I miss these days of having a fresh coconut with every meal. Every meal. That means every day I had at least 3 coconuts and still wanted more.

Rose apple - Chom poo. This is the fruit of my childhood. I left Vietnam when I was 5 years old and there aren't many memories that I hold vividly, except for the taste of this fruit. Many Southeast Asian fruits can be exported to the US or grown domestically, but due to its perishability, rose apples are not available in the States. I haven't had this in 21 years and one bite reminded me of my childhood in Vietnam. It was reminiscent of the moment in Ratatouille when the food critic takes a bite of ratatouille and is instantly transported back to his youth. 

Needless to say, I bought a whole bunch of fruits and stuffed myself silly in the first day of our trip. Also pictured here in brown is sapoche, which is sometimes available in the US or comes in canned form. And I'm sure most people can recognize the guava in green.

Mangosteen and rambutan. Also available in the US but taste much better in Canada and Thailand.

Crunchy, sour, green mango with spicy salt.

But of course...must have a Thai iced tea. Or in Thailand is it just an iced tea?

Mango and strawberry smoothies. They were good but not outstanding because we were in a touristy spot. Great beach view on our own private lounge area.

So much papaya salad - som tum. A classic staple of Thai cuisine and I never get sick of it. The raw green beans were always so fresh and crunchy. They served it on the side of mostly every dish. I miss the quality and freshness of their produce. I attribute this to not having refrigerators, driving food vendors to constantly purchase fresh produce for their stock. The last one was papaya salad with raw crab and a side of water mimosa and green beans. Really good and unique but it gave Phil his first emergency toilet visit.

Saved the best for last: refreshing green mango salad. So good and of course, a side of green beans!

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