Thai spices have been used for centuries to give food an aroma, flavours, and colours that makes it tempting and tasty.
When cooking Thai food, it is important to pay attention to each detail from taste, and colour to the garnishing of the meal. The herbs are famous for their authentic taste which gives a flavour boost to the food. The base of most cuisine is made up of a mélange of spices and seasonings. Mostly, the cuisine is aromatic, flavourful, spicy, and seasoned. These are prepared by different pastes commonly made with chiles, peppers, onions, cloves of garlic, and more.
In this blog post, we are going to discuss the authentic flavours of Thai spices and herbs that can give your food a traditional taste of the cuisine.
What Makes Thai Food Unique?
Thai cuisine is famous for its unique combination of flavours, herbs, Thai spices and aromas. The recipes make one of the most popular and mouth-watering cuisines in the world. So, Whether you like spicy or mild dishes, the food has rich flavours that everyone will love. Here are some factors that it unique and rich:-
1. Complex Flavors
The food is a mix of different flavours, Thai spices, and herbs made up of a harmonious blend of sweet, sour, salty, and spicy tastes. They make every dish by mixing the most premium herbs and spices. The variety of these flavours makes the food addictive and mouth-watering.
2. Fresh Ingredients
The cuisine is famous for its fresh vegetables, spices, herbs, meat, and more which makes the food more tempting and tasty. Thai markets are loaded with fresh ingredients that the locals can easily buy at affordable rates. Additionally, the raw ingredients are diced, chopped or grated to obtain their natural oils and flavours, enriching the taste of every dish.
3. Balance of Flavors
The cuisine is a balance of different flavours such as sweet, spicy, salty, and tartaric. The dishes are packed with a burst of different flavours that pop at the tip of your tongue. The foods are naturally rich in ingredients and Thai spices without any preservatives or chemicals that can alter their taste. That is why Thai cuisine is famous for its authentic flavours.
4. Cooking Techniques
What makes the cuisine different from others is the cooking techniques. Instead of typical boil-and-cook methods, Thai people use different cooking practices, such as stir-frying, grilling, steaming, and deep-frying. These cooking techniques also enhance the flavours and textures of the ingredients giving uniqueness to each dish.
5. Cultural Influence
Last but not the least is Cultural Influence. The cuisine is influenced by the diverse cultural heritage of the country. The usage of different Thai spices, sauces, ingredients, herbs, and cooking techniques comes from different cultures, including Chinese, Indian, and Malay. This blend of different cultural heritage is what makes the cuisine tempting and unique.
Best Thai Spices and Herbs
1. Coriander Seeds (Look-pak-chee)
Corrieder or Look-pak-chee is not only famous in Thailand but different countries for its authentic flavours and aroma. Most of the kitchen has a packet of coriander seeds in store as an essential food ingredient. In Thailand, these are extensively used for enhancing the flavours and garnishing the food while serving. Some people even use coriander roots also called cilantro roots in soups and curry-based items. But, Thai people use coriander seeds to add the perfect blend of flavour to every dish. They heavily rely on coriander seeds for sauteying foods, garnishing, and marinating.
2. Galangal (Kha)
Galangal also called Kha in Thailand is a famous herb that people use for cooking meats and chicken. As chicken is an essential component of Thai food, people extensively use it to enhance flavours and give aroma, and taste. Galangal gives chicken items the perfect blend of herbs and Thai spices which makes it unique and more tempting than other chicken dishes from different cultures. It has a somewhat similar flavour and texture to ginger as the two herbs are of the same genre, however, galangal offers a much milder yet complex flavour.
3. Cumin (Yee-rah)
Cumin or Yee-rah is widely used in countries such as China, Pakistan, India, Thailand, Bangladesh, Nepal, and similar. It is one of the traditional Thai spices that people use to give flavours to every dish. Especially in Thailand, cumin is used in almost every dish because of its strong and distinct flavour. They are used even in doughs as they release aroma and oils which can enhance the flavour of their flatbreads and buns. The aroma of cumin makes food tempting and more pleasing to taste. They are considered an essential part of yellow, green, and red curry.
4. Green Peppercorns (Bai ka-prow)
Green peppercorns also called Bai ka-prow in Thailand are a kind of green berries or chillies with lots of heat and spice. They are crunchy in texture and give a lot of aroma to foods, making them ideal for stir-fried Thai food dishes. They are popularly used for making stakes, stir-fried vegetables, and noodles.
5. Cinnamon (Ob-echoey)
Cinnamon or Ob-echoey is one of the most extensively used Thai spices used in various food dishes. People in Thailand use cinnamon leaves, sticks, or powders in almost all of their dishes. Especially in soups and curry food items, cinnamon is used for enhancing flavour and giving a bit of heat to the food. Paired with other spices, cinnamon sprinkling cinnamon in food makes it tempting, delicious, and flavourful.
Thai cuisine is famous across the world for its flavours, appearance, aroma, taste, and uniqueness. The traditional food recipes in Thailand include using various herbs, ingredients, and Thai spices. The distinct flavours of the cuisine, fresh ingredients, cooking techniques, and cultural influence make the food one of the best things in Thailand.