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Home > Knowledge > Eat Like Thai > Regional Food

Regional Food      
       
       
Food varies from region to region depending on which part of Thailand you travel. This includes modifications of standard dishes and also local specialties. Thailand is divided into four distinct regions:
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North

Northern Thailand, which is the area bordered by Burma to the west and Laos to the east which is Thai curry in this region have Burmese influences, they made without coconut milk, they are fiery and thinner in consistency. Sticky rice is the preferred rice same as in the Northeastern. The popular dishes from this region include:

  • Khao Soi (Burmese Noodle): Flat egg noodles with curry, is a speciality of Chiang Mai.
  • Sai Ua: Bright red sausages made with pork and chilies.
  • Naam Phrik Ong (Pork chili dip): Cooked minced pork, tomatoes, and chili, served with cooked or raw vegetables.
  • Naem Moo: Fermented sausages made with pork rind and sticky rice.

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Northeast

Northeastern food tends to be very spicy, with explosive salads and special broiled, minced meat dishes mined with tiny, high-voltage green chilies. Sticky rice is more popular in the region than loose, boiled rice, and exotic dishes like fried ants and grasshoppers and frog curry are not uncommon.
The popular dishes from this region include:

  • Khao Neaw (Sticky rice)
  • Gai Yang (Grilled chicken): Grilled chicken is found all over the area, often sold by roadside vendors. The chicken skin is rubbed with garlic, fish sauce, cilantro root or lemon grass and black pepper, then the chicken is usually flattened and pinned on a bamboo skewer before being barbecued over coals and served with a chili dipping sauce.
  • Larb: Minced chicken, pork or duck with lime juice, fish sauce, lemon grass, chilies or chili powder, shallot, mint leaves and roasted rice.
  • Nue Naam Tok: This dish is similar to Minced chicken salad but we use grilled sliced beef instead.
  • Som Tam(Green papaya salad): Green papaya with chilies, peanuts, cherry tomatoes and dried shrimp, is a popular snack. Individual portions are pounded together by hand and eaten with sticky rice. The addition of pickled crabs transforms “som tam” into a Laotian-style dish.
  • Bamboo shoot salad: Bamboo shoot salad is one of the most favorite dish in the North East. The main ingredients are fish sauce, lime juice, and chili.
 
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Central

The center area where Bangkok city is located, has no access to the sea, the waterways provide a host of freshwater fish, prawns(shrimp) and crabs. The cuisine of this region is what is generally considered to be classic Thai and includes what are probably the most recognizable Thai dishes. They include the following:

  • Green curry
  • Red curry
  • Panang curry
  • Tom Kha (coconut soup)
  • Tom yum (lemongrass soup)
  • Plah Goong(Spicy shrimp salad)
 
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South

Southern cuisine, makes delicious use of the seafood so abundant in the region. Lobsters, crab, scallops, fish, and squid are common ingredients and unusual delicacies like jellyfish salad can also be found. In the southern most provinces have a lot of Muslims. Their dishes use ghee and oil rather than coconut and use a larger range of fragrant spices including turmeric, cardamom, cumin and cloves. The South is also the land of the palm tree. Coconut and oil palms are farmed in plantations as well as growing wild, fringing the beaches on both coasts. Further up the Isthmus, sugar palms are grown for their sweet sap. Phuket is home to many pineapple plantations and rice is cultivated wherever it can be persuaded to grow.

The popular dishes from this region include:

  • Yellow curry: Yellow curry is very popular in the South, turmeric spice has a strong flavor and makes yellow color in this dish.
  • Matsaman curry: An Indian-style curry, is at its best in the South. The ingredients of this curry are potato, yellow onion and beef is seemed to be perfect for Matsaman curry.
  • Khao Yum: Cooked dry rice, toasted coconut, makrut (kaffir), lime leaves (kiffir lime leaves), bean sprouts and lemongrass. That makes a typical breakfast in the Southern areas of Thailand.

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