June 18, 2012

Green Papaya Salad


Ingredients:
1 green papaya, shredded*
2/3 cup matchsticked carrots
10 campari tomatoes, quartered
2/3 lb blanched long beans, cut into 1 1/2-2 inch pieces
4 Thai bird chiles, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup Thai fish sauce
juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons palm sugar

Directions:

In a large bowl, toss together the papaya, carrots, tomatoes and long beans. Use a potato masher to In a small bowl, whisk together the chiles, garlic, fish sauce, lime juice and palm sugar, taking care to fully dissolve the palm sugar. Drizzle over the papaya salad and toss to coat. Serve immediately.


*AKA a raw papaya
My thoughts:
It has been some warm weather here in Baltimore so when I heard that this week's episode of
 Bravo's “Around the World in 80 Plates”was taking place in Chiang Mai, Thailand this week (June 20th, 10/9c) I thought I'd make a version of one of the wonderful salads Thailand is famous for. This is a simplified take on som tam, the Northern Thai papaya salad. Traditionally the ingredient are lightly mashed with a mortar and pestle but most people do not have a big enough mortar to make the salad in. So instead, I minced the peppers and garlic rather than bashing them and instead lightly mashed the fruit and vegetables with a potato masher in a bowl to achieve a similar effect. But, rest assure the same distinctive sweet-salty-unami flavor is there. You can mix it up by varying the ingredients a bit: try raw Thai eggplant or cucumber or green mango for a more Laotian twist.

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