Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Lunch in Thailand

We have been getting two (large) unschooling families together about every week to cook ethnic cuisine, focusing on a particular country, region or culture. Last time we explored southeast Asia, with a particular emphasis on Thai spices. We had fun sniffing and tasting our way through curry paste, fish sauce, tamarind paste and the like. With vegetarians in the mix, we avoided the meat and seafood (except for a "contains fish sauce" option on the sauce) but we had a lot of fun and a good meal to boot. Here are three popular menu items from last week:

Spicy Thai Peanut Sauce

1 1/2 cups peanut buetter
3/4 cup coconut milk
2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
3 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp. fish sauce
1/2 tsp. tamarind paste
1 tsp red chili sauce (more or less to taste)

Combine in blender. Whizz until smooth. Serve as a dipping sauce for salad rolls.

Salad Rolls

2 cups rice or bean vermicelli, cooked & cooled
2 cups of mixed julienned veggies (carrots, sweet peppers, cucumber, scallions, eg.)
2 cups of mung bean sprouts
1 cup cooked cooled salad shrimp (optional)
two dozen rice paper wrappers

Fill a large plate with water. Carefully immerse one rice paper circle in the water. Wait 45-60 seconds until the paper has softened to the pliable but not soggy stage. Carefully remove from water and place on clean work surface near fillings. Load your rice paper with your preferred fillings, in a vertical rectangle area in the middle. Fold up the bottom, then roll up from side to side. Serve with sweet chili sauce or spicy Thai peanut sauce.

Coconut Rice Pudding

4 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 14-oz. cans of coconut milk
2 cups jasmine (fragrant) rice
1 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Preheat oven to 300 F. Butter a casserole dish. Beat eggs & sugar well. Add other ingredients
and mix well. Place in casserole dish. Rest the casserole dish in a larger pan filled with 1" of water and place the whole apparatus in the oven. Bake 20 minutes. Stir. Bake a further 45 minutes.

1 comment:

  1. My husband loves Thai food. This sounds really good!


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