Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Carrot Spicy Salad Thai Style (Som Tam)

In Thailand we use grated green paw paw for this dish (but now they add a little bit of grated carrot at some places!) When I was in Holland I used kohlrabi and it was not too bad. Here in New Zealand, carrots are yummy with their natural sweetness so they are fantastic for this Som Tam Salad.
You will need:
2 Carrots, coarsely grated
2 Tomatoes, quartered
10 Green beans or 2 yard long beans, chopped into 5 cm long pieces
Several cloves of garlic
3 tablespoons Roasted peanuts or 1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts for people with allergy
2 limes
25 -30 grams Palm sugar
Fish Sauce
1-2 Fresh chillies
Ground dried prawns (optional)
And most important – mortar and pestle

There is no fix recipe for this salad – the amount of ingredients is for guideline only. You can adjust the seasoning to your taste – just don’t go to heavy handed with chillies and fish sauce.

Pound peanut roughly and set aside – if you use pine nuts, leave them whole. Roughly pound 1/3 of chillies, garlic and palm sugar in the mortar (with pestle, of course) – a little bit at a time and then place the mixture in a bowl. Bruise1/3 carrots, tomato pieces, bean the same mortar – there should be a little bit of juice coming out from vegetables – remove from mortar and add to the bowl. Repeat the process with the rest of ingredients. Add fish sauce (a little bit at a time) and lime juice. Taste and add more seasoning including sugar if needed. Sprinkle with prawns and peanuts – enjoy.

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