Image: Mai Siam

Heritage

“The Mai Siam or Siamese Silk” range of sauces and pastes comes to you directly from Thailand.

 

Its cuisine is essentially a marriage of centuries-old Eastern and Western influences harmoniously combined into something unique Thai. Since the coconut milk & chilli were brought into Thailand in 13th & 16th century respectively, including healthy herbs like garlic, onion, lemon grass, galangal, kaffir lime, krachai (fingerroot) etc. Mai Siam brings you the flavours of Thailand in your own Kitchen like you have them in its homeland. We are presenting you the best and smooth cooking of Thai Cuisine, We ensure your joy of cooking that Mai Siam would bring to you, where the taste of Thai cuisine truly comes alive’

The 'Tai' people migrated from valley settlements in the mountainous region of Southwest China (now Yunnan province) between the sixth and thirteenth centuries, into what is now known as Thailand, Laos, the Shan States of upper Burma, and northwest Vietnam. Influenced by Chinese cooking techniques, Thai cuisine flourished with the rich biodiversity of the Thai peninsula. As a result, Thai dishes today have some similarities to Szechwan Chinese dishes.

During the reign of King Narai the Great, Thai food took a great leap forward. As trade with Thailand increased the idea of adding milk to foods was introduced to Thailand. Thais did not use coconut milk in their food prior to the arrival of foreigners. Through experimentations the use of coconut milk in curries became the norm.

Further culinary additions began to arrive in the 1600s from the Portuguese, Dutch, French, English, Arab, Indian and Japanese visitors to Thailand.

The late 17th century brought chilli into Thai cooking for the first time thanks to Portuguese missionaries who had acquired the taste in South America.

Interestingly, the wife of a diplomat introduced the Thai people to custard and Arab Muslims demonstrated the art of cooking with peanuts.

Thai cuisine has a long tradition with elaborate food preparation known as palace cuisine where intricate dishes are presented with garnishes of flowers and masterfully carved vegetables and fruits. This was studied as a household artform.

The other side of Thai cuisine is traditional home cooking – simple, hearty and flavourful.

Thai people like to say that food should not only taste good but also look good and be good for your health.

The Thais are great eaters, not necessarily in quantity but in the way they relish their food, appreciating individual tastes and subtle combinations of dishes.

Thai cooking, like most Asian cuisine, is a style of cooking that ‘throws together’ the ingredients leaving room for creativity and altogether abandoning a rigid approach.

Thais use forks and spoons, holding the fork in the left hand to aid in pushing the food onto the right-hand-held spoon.

Stuffing ones mouth is considered impolite and, therefore, each spoonful should be moderately filled to correspond with accepted custom.

There shouldn’t be any sound of utensils scraping the plate nor should there be grains of rice on the lips.

Instead of serving dishes in courses, a Thai meal is served all at once, permitting diners to enjoy complementary combinations of different tastes.

A proper Thai meal consists of soup, a curry dish, steamed rice and a dip accompanied with vegetables. A spiced salad may replace the curry dish. The soup can also be spicy, but the curry would have to be replaced by non-spiced items.

The basic characteristic of Thai food comes form a mixture of salt and pepper, garlic and coriander root pounded together.

The aromatic qualities of Thai dishes are derived form a large number of herbs, spices, leaves, roots and even flowers. These include lemon grass, lime leaves and all kinds of chilli.

A most essential ingredient in Thai cooking is the coconut, used for its milk and cream.

The one common ingredient you will find in the majority of Thai food dishes is rice. It is served with each meal, as a snack, and is even included in some desserts. Other basic ingredients are garlic, chilies, lime juice, lemongrass, fresh coriander leaf, fermented fish sauce, or shrimp paste, which adds a salty flavor. There is a distinct taste to this ethnic cuisine that diners often find difficult to pinpoint. Perhaps it comes from the use of seasonings we westerners don’t use often, such as galingale, ground peanuts, tamarind, turmeric, ginger, and coconut milk. Browsing through an open air market shoppers may find lotus stems along side bamboo shoots and bean sprouts. Unknown fruits like durians, longans, rambutans, and mangosteens, share space with guavas and bananas. Lamb and veal are seldom found, and pork is more popular than beef. Delving into a world only seen on Fear Factor, one might also happen upon crickets, silkworm, and red ant larvae.

History Of Thai Food
Thai cuisine bears the influence of Chinese Indian food. Most notable similarities are the hot and spicy dishes of Szechaun and the curries from India. In bygone days, the food was cooked with a minimal amount of fat. Seafood was preferred over meat. Minimum portions of foods cooked lightly to retain their crunch and nutritional value was the norm.

Regional Cooking
Central - A touch of sweetness and presentation is important. Carved produce is frequently used as table decoration. Three to five dishes usually accompany the staple rice dish. Typically, they are fried meats with chili sauce, curries, and vegetable soups.


Northern - Northern Thai food encompasses the bounty of locally available ingredients. Sticky rice and vegetables are the sides for pork and chicken. Salty tastes predominate. Another favored delicacy is Naem- a fermented minced pork sausage wrapped in a banana leaf.


Southern - Spicy food reigns supreme in the south. Gang (spiced soup or curry) is the local favorite. Other specialties are sataw, a green pod with green berries. Thinly sliced sataw find their way into gangs with meat and chilies or served with vegetables boiled in coconut milk.


North-Eastern - This is where some of the oddest dishes by western standards are found. Locals prefer their meat fried, and also take a liking to frog, lizard, snake, large red ants, rice field rats, and insects. Definitely not for the weak stomach.