The four pillar of Thai Food
Thai food is soaring in its popularity across the globe. It is one cuisine that is attracting the attention of food lovers across. Not just that, Thai food enjoys the patronage of both vegetarians and non vegetarians alike. The last three decades has seen an unbelievable rate of growth of Thai food around the world. Is it easy to order Thai food anywhere in the world today. USA, UK, India, Australia, UAE and even Srilanka offer Thai food. Food lovers have been fascinated thoroughly by Thai food. Wonder why!?
In an attempt to find the reasons for Thai food’s popularity, I went searching for answers in to the heart of Thailand. What I found in my journey to discover Thai food left me not just happy but a lifelong loyalist to Thai cuisine. Here are my findings:-
Thai food is harmonious – The most popular religion practiced in Thailand is Buddhism. The way of life propounded by Buddha in his teachings has influenced Thai food heavily. Just like Buddhism, Thai food is harmonious in its tastes. In fact, the desperate elements used do not make it easy to believe. But, it is interesting to see that each Thai dish is harmonious to the core. Spice and sweet, sour and salty all come together to make a perfect dish. Even when one chooses to order food online to indulge in Thai cuisine, it is the harmony that makes or breaks a perfect Thai dish.
There are no measuring cups – It might come as a surprise to many that there is absolutely no use of measuring cups in authentic Thai preparations. Native Thai cooks and chefs are seasoned at making what they make. It is learnt through years of observation and learning by seeing. A non native chef or cook might find this a wee bit uncomfortable in the initial days of Thai cooking, but one will eventually understand that cooking Thai food is all about relying on your tongue.
Five good groups are present – Thai food is inspired and influenced heavily by Chinese cuisine. It has picked up a lot from cuisines from its neighboring countries as well. These influences are seen in the use of the five food groups in almost all dishes of Thai cuisine. Every time you order Thai food, you will notice that there are grains, legumes, fruits/vegetables/ lean meats, poultry or fish and dairy products. Not all of them are in equal proportion. Naturally, carbohydrates in the form of grain and legumes dominate the dish but a healthy proportion of other elements is always there.
Thai food is a delight to the eye – My grandmother used to say, what good is a dish if it’s not good to look at. She would have been extremely delighted to see Thai food, if she were around. Each Thai dish is a piece of art. There is color, arrangement and method in the way a dish is presented. Not a bit of grain is out of its place, no color is too jarring and no element is misplaced. Even if one were to order food online, a Thai dish will come in a shape and form that is an absolute delight to the eye.
These and so many other reasons make Thai food popular. I am just at the beginning of my journey to discover Thai cuisine and I am already excited about what I am finding.