Shortcuts making Thai cooking a little easier
1. Cut a lime Thai-style
If you travel to Thailand, you will notice that Thai people tend to cut limes « vertically », in about 5 slices that they would finally squeeze between their fingers. By cutting the lime in smaller slices they make it easier to squeeze.
- Roll and press your lime on a hard counter to soften the flesh and make it easier to release the juices.
- Cut the lime vertically, 4 times in a square shape.
- Twist the long rectangular shaped central part.
2. Reduce the heat of Thai chillies
Chillies are used in Thai cooking more than any western cuisines.
You might not want to remove all the seeds, as you want to retain some heat.
- Remove the stem with a sharp knife.
- Slice the chilli lengthwise. You can either cut it open or into two halves.
- Scrape off the seeds and the pith with the edge of the knife or a spoon.
3. Cut a ripe Mango the Thai way
Ask anyone in the world about Thailand, and the conversation is likely to turn to the kingdom’s ripe mangoes: aromatic and golden !
Here is how to cut and Prepare Thai ripe Mango:
- With a very sharp knife slice both tops of the mango.
- With your thumb pushing the blade away from your body slowly peel a strip of skin off the mango along the curvature of the fruit.
- Once the entire mango is peeled, position your knife parallel with the wide surface of the pit. Make a cut as close to the pit as possible.
- Cut the mango crosswise into thick slices.
Your perfectly cut mango is ready to be served!
4. Prepare fresh kaffir lime leaves
Kaffir Lime has a distinctive lime-lemon aroma and flavour that are an indispensable part of Thailand cooking. The leaves are too tough to just eat except when sliced very thin, here is how to proceed.
- Fold your fresh kaffir lime leaf in half along the rib.
- Remove the rib and tear the leaf to help release fragrance.
- Slice finely to include them throughout all your dishes !
5. Use a mortar to maximize flavours !
Crushing the fibers of herbs with mortar gives a greater breadth and depth of flavor than chopping them in a food processor can achieve.
This is especially critical when working with fibrous aromatics and roots, such as lemongrass, galangal, garlic and kaffir lime peel.
When these herbs are pounded together, their flavors meld into one, yielding an immensely aromatic paste !!!