I know Monday’s post was a bit of a Debbie Downer, but don’t worry, I’m not done writing about travel — just being a permanent nomad. So in a complete 180 from Monday’s post, let’s talk about travel and my love of good Thai food. When I returned to Thailand a few weeks ago from being in Cambodia, I went on an eating binge. Cambodia, as much as I love it, doesn’t have a lot of great food. It’s very bland, and I missed the zesty, spicy, and flavorful Thai food. Since I was leaving Bangkok soon, I tried to enjoy as much Thai food as I could. So as a way to remember all the food I ate, as well as make you run off to your local Thai restaurant, here’s a list of all my favorite Thai food:
This is the quintessential Thai dish, but it’s often ruined in restaurants around the world, as they standardize it to the point where it becomes generic. Yet I love a good pad thai, and when you veer out of the tourist destinations, it’s easy to find it in Thailand. On Sukhimvit 33 in Bangkok, there’s a pad thai stall so good that even my Thai friends compliment it. I bring every visitor to Bangkok there. Pad thai may be standard fare, but it’s oh so good.
I love eating spring rolls as a quick street snack. You get five for 50 cents. Throughout the streets of the main cities, you find little stalls around, and for a quick midday or late-night appetizer, nothing beats a spring roll — draped in sweet chili sauce, of course.
Red Pork Noodle Soup (Kuay Teow Moo Daeng)
By far my favorite Thai dish, this red pork noodle soup is sadly only found in Thailand. It’s street food (i.e., not found in restaurants), and because of the way they make the broth, you’ll never find it outside of Thailand. The broth sits for a long time, and health and safety organizations don’t really sign off on kitchens doing that. This dish consists of noodles, a potent and flavorful broth (made from boiled pork bones and onions), sprouts, bok choy, and slices of red pork. You can eat it a few ways, and I eat mine with a little fish sauce (sour), a few spoonfuls of sugar (sweet), and a small amount of chili. It’s always the first dish I eat when I return to Thailand.
This Thai omelette is my breakfast of choice. It’s egg mixed with fish sauce and chilies, cooked in oil, served atop white rice, and slathered in sweet chili sauce. I never would have imagined egg, rice, and sweet chili sauce would work together, but they do. It’s the breakfast of champions.