Thailand has plenty of delicious dishes and mastering all the right ratio of condiments that are provided to your table will add that extra flavor or aroi to your dishes. Traveling around Thailand and eating Thai dishes you may wonder what are the popular condiments set on your table in a little carrier or the ones that add that wonderful aroma to Thai dishes! In this blog post, we will introduce you to the top then condiments that you will find in Thai dishes.
1. Fried Garlic (Gratiem jiew): Golden brown garlic in oil. Yum!
2. Fried Shallots (Hom jiew): Crunchy, golden brown fried shallots. Frying anything makes it better!
3. Holy basil (Kaphrao): Kaphrao famously used in Kaphrao Gai/Nuea/Moo/Goong as it has a distinctive scent of clove and those reddish tipped leaves. Very popular condiments in many type of Thai dishes. Try eating a leaf with a bite of your dish if you find it on your plate.
Forest & Kim Starr [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
4. Phak chi (Coriander): Found in the world renowned Tom Yum soup. It’s also used to prepare many types of Yum (salad) dishes for example Yum Kai Dao, Yum Gai.
5. Rak phak chi (Coriander root): It’s the root of coriander which is used in Tom yam kung or to prepare curry pastes.
6. Takhrai (lemon grass): Used in curries, spicy soups, and salads. If you find a large chunk of it in your soup or other dish make sure to set it aside as it is not meant to be eaten whole.
7. Chili Garlic Sauce (Prig Nam Som): Hot, sour, red chili sauce found in the famous spice carrier at almost every restaurant table. perfect blend of spice and sour to give your food the right amount of flavor.
8. Kapi (Thai shrimp paste): Fermented ground shrimp and salt. It has a seafood odor and is often used in curry paste, soups (Gaeng lien) and nam phrik kapi. You might think is sounds off, but it can really make a dish pop.
By Takeaway (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
9. Pla ra (Salt fermented fish sauce): It’s used it Som tam Pla ra. It can sometimes make you second guess because of the fishy smell, but make sure to give it a try it in a Som tam dishes.
By Xufanc (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
10. Dried chili dipping sauce: Mixture of red pepper powder, fish sauce, cilantro leaves, toasted rice powder and fresh lime juice. It’s delicious with Yang (grilled) dishes for example Gai Yang(grilled chicken), Nuea Yang(grilled beef) and more! You will also enjoy it with grilled pla duk (Thai grilled fish).