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Thai Green Mango Salad with Grilled Shrimp and Cashews (ยำมะม่วงกุ้งย่าง)

Thai Green Mango Salad with Grilled Shrimp by

For this batch, I grilled my shrimp with the shells on; this explains the absence of grill marks.

This is just something I threw together for lunch the other day. The ingredients are so perfect together. Having said that, there’s lots of room to play around with this no-recipe recipe. Grilled scallops or cuttlefish would make a great substitute for the shrimp. I can also see small pieces of white fish, lightly-battered and deep-fried, in this in lieu of the grilled seafood (the end result would closely mimic the much-loved yam pla-duk fu). Cashew is the best nut for this salad, but peanut would be nice also.

Just for kicks, add a tablespoon of nam prik pao to it. Continue Reading →

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Russian “Korean” Salad (Корейская Морковь)

russian korean carrot salad Корейская Морков
This “Korean” carrot salad is found all over the area that is the former Soviet Union. I certainly saw it popping up here and there during my travels in Ukraine and its environs; I just never paid attention to it or cared to find out what kind of carrot salad it was. Why would I dedicate the space in my digestive tract to a carrot salad, which I could have gotten anywhere, when I could gorge on local vareniki, Baltic sprat sandwiches, and golubtsi? Continue Reading →

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Som Tam Recipe (ส้มตำ): Thai Green Papaya Salad With or Without a Mortar

som tum thai papaya salad recipe
Some of the requests I’ve been getting in the past several months include, “How do you make X without Y (Y = a cooking apparatus with which X is traditionally prepared)?” Ranked number one among such requests is, “How do you make Thai green papaya salad without a mortar and a pestle?”

On a bad day, I would cringe and wonder, in this day and age when even the most exotic of cooking tools can be purchased online, what would be the excuses for not investing in such tools if the success in creating one’s favorite dishes depends on them? But on a good day, I tell my sometimes impatient, self-righteous self to shut the heck up. True, the tools may be more readily available these days, but there are issues of shipping costs (would anyone care to calculate how much it costs to ship a granite mortar across the country?), storage space, etc. Besides, I am a trouble-shooter by nature. The process of figuring out creative solutions to a problem thrills me to no end. Macgyver is my kitchen patron saint.

Well, guess what. Today’s one of those good days. Continue Reading →

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