Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Here's the final northern themed post in this series I'll do. I look back at what I've got and realize if I want to quickly tackle any more regional food, I'll need more recommendations, and or more contacts.

Here's something I could have used more of while I was up north. A simple restaurant review.

The place: Thong. A great northern restaurant in Chiang Mai, set in an old Thai house. It's a pretty simple looking place with great food. Here's what we ate.

We started with Gaeng Som (sour curry).

Gaeng Som is a favorite of mine, but this one was different. It was more sour and more complex than usual. It was and is the best I've ever had.

Next we had a new dish. Tamarind shoot salad.

It was comprised of tamarind shoots, onions, tomatoes, pork, and something else I'm sure. It had a rich, complex, and spicy flavor. It was one of those dishes that didn't give me an initial reaction because I had to pause and figure just what was going on in my mouth. Yes, this was something new. Just what I was looking for. But really: I'm not really sure how it was made. Maybe you can help me...

We rounded out the meal with fried silk worms.

These were a recommended dish so I thought what the hell. I'd never had them and this seemed like a good place to try them. My general impression of them is what I think of most insects. Mostly crisp, as much flavor as sauce you put on. A great drinking snack perhaps, but nothing more. I find their texture a bit like breakfast cereal, only savory. All in all, a great food source really.

Thong Restaurant
Nimanhemin Rd. Soi 13
Chiang Mai
I forgot to get a card, thus no number. Don't worry, you'll find it.


Anonymous said...

Nice salad pic! I love northern Thai cuisine for the huge variety of greens and leaves - changing by the season - that it incorporates. Northern Thai markets are row after row of (to me) thrillingly unfamiliar green stuff. Tamarind leaves (from the tree) are especially common in Philippine dishes (stuffed into lechon, simmered in soups and 'stews'), and they show up on the table in Malaysia too. This is the first time I've seen them raw, in a salad (or were they blanched?). Brilliant.

Austin said...

The tamarind salad looks brilliant! I love how they put pork rinds in salads in the north... Raw, tender young tamarind leaves are used in this dish. There's a similar dish in Burma.


a said...

Yes, these were very young raw leaves. I too enjoy the unfamiliar green stuff, even with the occasional mishap. I once purchased a green that oozed a mucous like substance when eaten raw or cooked. Okra can be slimy but is really nothing compared to this unfamiliar green. I looked it up but never figured out what it was!

I had not had this dish before, but I thought it tasted like some burmese food I'd had in the past. I can't really expain it other than the mixture of spices were not immediately familiar as your everyday Thai food. Good stuff.

Anonymous said...

The card which from Tong (their transliteration, not mine) I got in Nov 2010 showed: 0-5389-4701

SinoSoul said...

err. *which I got from Tong

a said...

gotcha. i suppose my tranliteration seems rather suggestive, wouldn't you say!?