The key to Thai food is all in the prep. I learned that much while I was traveling in Thailand and happened upon a Thai cooking school called Smart Cook, located in Krabi. I of course decided it would be silly to miss out on the chance to learn from real Thai chefs and signed myself up. The class was small with only 5 students and 2 teachers. Each of us had a place at the table to work on our dishes, including curry sauces from scratch, mango sticky rice and fried bananas. That night I came home stuffed to the gills, but it was a consequence I was willing to accept for such delicious fare.
Beyond the food, Thailand still ranks as my favourite country to visit. There is oodles to0 see, but I was only there for ten days so I know that there is much more to experience. (…During a future trip, perhaps?)
I was lucky enough to camp on a very remote island off the West Coast called Koh Rok. There we fished, snorkeled, hiked and appreciated the beautiful ocean-side and natural beauty of Thailand. I also rode on the back of an elephant called Munter and fed her fresh pineapple as a reward.
In Bangkok, I made friends with two other solo travelers and together we visited the lavish Grand Palace, walked the touristy Khoa san Road and risked our lives crammed into a speeding tuk tuk.
To be honest, I could go on all day about Thailand, but what really blows my mind is that Thai people are so friendly. Smiles come so readily that it is no surprise the world knows Thailand as the “Land of Smiles”. I suppose that’s the result of living in such a beautiful country with the most amazing food.
I really didn’t intend to create a blog post about travelling in Thailand, but any time I eat Thai food, I can’t help but reminisce about the amazing experiences I had there. Whether you love the fresh and spicy food, the beautiful weather or the never-ending lists of adventures to be had, Thailand is a place not to miss. And with that, I give you a fresh spring roll recipe. You may have indulged in some of their deep-friend counterparts, but the fresh spring rolls are in my opinion much more delicious and flavourful….of course, they are much healthier as well. And one more thing to note; everything in the recipe can be found at your local grocery store. Nothing is out of the ordinary which means we can all enjoy a little Thailand in our own home sweet homes.
Fresh Thai Spring Rolls Recipe
4 oz rice vermicelli noodles
1 large carrot, shredded
1 cup julienne cucumbers
2 avocados, peeled and sliced lengthwise into 1cm wide pieces
1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped
1/4 cup fresh coriander leaves, chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar
1/2 lime, juiced
4 tsp fish sauce
12 rice paper wrappers (approx 10 inch diameter)
Place 3 cups of water in a pot and bring to a boil. Add noodles and let stand until softened (8 minutes or so). Drain and add cold water. Drain again. Pour noodles into a bowl and add 1/4 seasoned rice vinegar, juice of a lime and 4 tsp fish sauce. Let sit.
Set up a sort of assembly line on your counter with all vegetables and herbs ready to be added to your spring rolls. At the start of your assembly line, pour hot water into a big pie plate (large enough to fit the rice paper wrappers easily).
Take one rice paper wrapper and submerge it in the hot water for 5-10 seconds until it is pliable. Place it on a flat surface and add pieces of cucumber, carrot, and 1/4 cup of noodles (let liquid run off noodles before adding to the spring roll). Sprinkle a few pieces of each herb on top and add one slice of an avocado. Finally, wrap the spring roll by folding both the right and left sides over and then rolling from front to back into a cylinder. Place the spring rolls on a plate when complete and store in the fridge for up to 5 hours. Serve with Thai Sweet and Spicy Sauce.
Tell me: what is your favourite Thai dish? Maybe I’ll give it a try on One Tip For The Future….
Ever been to Thailand? What would you recommend?