The gateway to Southeast Asia, Thailand is the most popular tourist destination in this region. Once considered the mecca for backpackers, today’s Thailand attracts both backpackers as well as luxury travellers from all over the world. With its beautiful beaches, incredible islands, rich water life and attractive inlands, Thailand is the perfect place to spend your vacation in Southeast Asia. However, apart from its natural attractions, there is also another aspect of Thailand which you must explore if you want to experience the true nature of this country and that is its food. The Thai food speaks a lot about the Thai people, and is an integral part of their history and culture. So no matter if you’re a backpacker or you’re staying at one of the luxurious mansions in Thailand, you have to try these five dishes during your vacation in Thailand, to have the ultimate Thai experience.
1. Boat Noodles (KuayTeowReua)
Boat noodles have a really strong historical connection with Thailand, especially Bangkok. Back in the days, the dish used to be served from the boats of the huge canal network that Bangkok used to have, and this is how it got its name. These tiny bowls of noodles used to be the staple food of the office goers, as well as the shopkeepers of the market. The key ingredient of this dish is a dash of pig’s blood, which may discourage some people. However, the blood gets coagulated almost instantaneously as soon as it hits the hot broth, which gives the broth a unique creamy texture.
2. Tom Yum Goong
Tom yum soup is a type of hot and sour coconut milk based Thai soup, which has become widely popular around the globe. The goong stands for prawns, which means the tom yum goong version of the soup contains prawns as the main protein. Flavoured heavily with kaffir lime leaves and prawn head extracts, this spicy soup will surely test your tastebuds with the ultimate sensation.
3. Green Papaya Salad (Som Tam)
The main ingredient of this insanely spicy and flavourful salad is raw papaya, Thai bird’s eye chilli and shrimp paste. Originated from the Northeastern or Isan region of Thailand, this dish has gained nationwide popularity. You can get different varieties of this dish almost anywhere in Thailand. Most of the places sell more than one varieties of som tam varying in flavour and spiciness. So make sure to make them understand how spicy you want you som tam to be because this preparation can easily become too hot to handle.
4. Stir Fried Pork with Holy Basil
Called pad krapaomooin Thai, this dish is one of the staple food of many of the office goers and locals of Thailand. You can find this widely popular lunchtime street food at almost every moderately modern corner of the country. The best version of this street food can be found in Bangkok, where the street food vendors have elevated this dish to a whole new level. The stir-fried pork is almost always served with a side of rice and afried egg.
5. Mango Sticky Rice
This is a widely popular summertime dessert of Thailand. The dessert is made by boiling sticky rice in coconut milk, and then the cooked rice is served with freshly cut mangoes. The dessert looks small but packs a ton of flavour from the mangoes and the coconut milk, and the paring of these two ingredients will surely bring joy to your life during the days of your Thai trip. It is one of those must-try dishes which makes Thailand one of the most awesome food destinations.