I have more to say about Khao Phra Ram Long Song (ข้าวพระรามลงสรง), nicknamed “Swimming Rama,” one of the most popular dishes on the menus of Thai restaurants in the United States but something nowhere near as frequently seen or consumed in Bangkok, its birthplace.
For now, in order to get ready for what’s to come, those who are not familiar with the Indian epic, the Ramayana, may want to at least skim its Wiki entry. You don’t need to know anything about the Ramayana to make this dish properly, of course, but if you’re at all interested in the origin of the name of this dish and how it’s related to this piece of Indian literature, I hope this little cultural tour I’m taking you on will prove interesting.
A recipe will soon follow.
In the meantime, let me distract you with a little bit of entertainment. If you wish to study the Ramayana in a serious, scholarly manner, this is probably not what you want (instead, go here for links to all six kandas of the whole thing). But for a fun, modern, artistic take on an ancient piece of literature, here’s a musical animation, loosely based on the events directly pertaining to Sita who is one of the main characters in the Ramayana, by animator Nina Paley. You can find out more about Paley and the story behind this film, her personal interpretation of the Ramayana, on her official website. (Thank you @uncle_vinny for telling me about this film!)