When in Thailand eat like the Thais do!

Travel & LeisureTravel Tips

  • Author Lynne Foster
  • Published May 4, 2012
  • Word count 416

Before I go on holiday I like to know as much as I can about a place, what their customs are, traditional foods, top places to see – everything I can find. So, when we started to look into a holiday to Thailand I immediately started doing my research. Now we're back I thought I would share what I found about eating out in Thailand.

Influences in Thai food

First of all the influences in Thai food...it's influences come from a mixture of Tai, Indian and Chinese with a touch of Malaysian and Indonesian which accounts for the lovely spiced and sometimes (very) hot food. There is a lot of coconut, chilli, lemongrass, garlic and ginger flavours along with 'Nam pla' (fish paste). Thai food is incredibly aromatic and the first taste of any of it is usually amazing!

How to eat like the Thais

It's unusual to eat alone and this may draw you some odd looks. Far more common is eating in groups with several meals shared amongst the group. Quite a nice way to eat and good to get a taste of everything. It's also a very sociable way of eating and the meal is not treated as fuel to be devoured but tastes to be savoured.

Usually your meal will include rice, curry, soup and several side dishes. There are two types of rice with 'sticky' (khao niaw) being used mainly in sweets and Kaho Jao being plain white rice.

Traditionally Thais ate their food with their hands but food is now eaten with a fork and spoon as the food is all in bite sized pieces before it gets to the table. There's something nice about not having the formality of a knife and fork and using a spoon to get every last drop out of your bowl!

Thais tend to eat 'little but often' and you won't be short of places to snack throughout the day from popping into a restaurant to snacking from street stalls – try everything to get a real flavour of what Thailand has to offer.

Choosing a Thai Restaurant

When you choose your venue don't be put off by the look of it! One of the best places we ate was in a restaurant up a back alley – was fantastic food and I'd have eaten there every day! Another great place was in the top of a market where we had the most amazing and cooling ice drink which was more than needed in the heat.

The Thai Orchid in Edinburgh is one of the best restaurants in edinburgh royal mile

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