Thai Food

thailand
Som Tam from Two Ladies

This has been one of my favorite posts to write. I miss Thailand and its food.

We ate gooood while we lived there. Most of the time we ate Thai food but every so often, we’d go to a western-ish/international restaurant and splurge.

I would just like to start off in saying that I cannot believe I had never tried Thai food before going to Thailand. I was missing out!!!

Thai food is not the same everywhere which is sad. When I got it in the US it didn’t taste the same.

The spelling was always different everywhere we went because the English alphabet doesn’t the have exact translations for their vowels and consonants. I’ve noticed that here in South Korea as well.

Pad Thai from a restaurant near our school

Some Thai words that we learned were:

  • Ma Muang = mango
  • Kai = egg
  • Mangsawerat (mang-sa-wee-rot) = vegetarian
  • Khao = rice
  • Goong/Koong = shrimp
  • Pad = stir fry
  • Pak = vegetable
  • Chai Po = turnip
  • Som Tam = papaya salad
  • Boong = water spinach
  • Tang Mo = watermelon
Pad see ew & pad kra row goong with chai jiew

Whenever we’d go out to eat, we’d usually get the same dishes. Christina and I only ate fish so we had to learn our way around the menus in our town.

Pad Thai from Haven Outdoorism

The Thai dishes that we’d get:

One of the meals after a day of fishing!
  • Pad Thai
  • Khao Pad Kai (egg fried rice)
  • Khao Pad Pak (vegetable fried rice)
  • Pad Hoi Lai (clams)
  • Kai Jiew Chai Po (egg omelet with Chinese radish)
  • Pla Pao (grilled fish)
  • Khao Soi (spicy coconut curry)
  • Yum Kai Dow (Thai fried egg salad: egg, raw onion, tomato, lime juice and fish sauce)
  • Pad Kra Prow (spicy veggie rice)
  • Tom Yum Goong (shrimp tom yum)
  • Pad Pongali Goong (shrimp yellow curry)
  • Khao Niaow Ma Muang (mango sticky rice).

My all time favorite dish was Som Tam. It was spicy, sweet and somewhat healthy. It had garlic and tomatoes in it which are two of my favs.

We stumbled upon this yummy place towards the end of our Mahachai days.

I got som tam ped nid noi (a little spicy) almost every single day at school for the cheap price of ฿25. Whenever I would walk in the line in the cafeteria, the lady wouldn’t even say anything, she’d just start making it.

My last plate of som tam made me emotional. I was obsessed with it. Sometimes I’d have it twice or three times a day.

My friend Mo ended up getting me a mortar before I visited home in October. I tried to make it and it just wasn’t the same.

Number 8 food! Miss it 💕

Pad see ew was another mouthwatering dish. It was one of the first dishes that I had in Thailand.

Khao Soi

⬆️ top left: pad pongali goong, pad pak boong, pla pao, ma kheu (some type of eggplant dish), pad hoi lai

Sometimes we’d go to Khod Tim Cafe after a scrumptious dinner and get some of their delish ice cream. Whenever we’d get a craving for something sweet, we’d go there.

The Michelin restaurant that was called Ruean Panya Restaurant was close to Christina’s apartment. I don’t even remember what we got but it was a lot of seafood. Some of it was okay and some we were like uhhhh what is this??

Michelin star pictures ⬆️

From top left: khao niaow ma muang (mango sticky rice), roti, fruit cart, pad pak boong, kai jiew chai po

There were dessert cafes at every corner in Mahachai. Our friends Smart and Namkang took us to one and we got some ice cream and sweet stuff.

There were also fruit carts and one bag of fruit was usually about ฿20-30. I’d usually get tang mo 🍉

I really cannot wait to go to Thailand again and shove my face with all of the delicious food!! Once Covid is over, it will be the first place I visit!

Mahachai, Samut Sakhon

thailand
เหี้ย (water monitor)

After my six weeks in Chaiyaphum, I moved to Mahachai. Christina worked at a school there and they just happened to need another teacher. I wasn’t ready to leave Thailand yet so I packed my bags and went to Mahachai.

I stayed at Christina’s for a few nights while the coordinator looked for nearby apartments for me.

🇹🇭

Three days later I was lugging my little suitcase to “the apartment near Pizza Hut.” That was my name for it for the first few months before I knew the name. I still called it that even after I found out the actual name. My apartment was about a fifteen minute walk from Indria’s, twenty minutes from Christina’s, and ten minutes to school. It was in a great spot.

Just to give a little perspective of the Mahachai layout:

The main road in Mahachai is called Ekachai Road. My apartment was on the corner of Ekachai and Setthakij 1 Road.

The closest Tesco Lotus was about a thirty minute walk from me. I love walking but it was rough. It wouldn’t have been so bad BUT it was always sooooo hot in Thailand so walking there wasn’t too enjoyable. I’d literally step outside and start dripping.

Som tam from Tesco 😍

Tesco Lotus had a few cute stores. Also, a twenty Baht store was right outside. Inside they had: a KFC, and a Dunks (they only sold donuts). They also had a cafeteria that had delicious soup, spicy som tam, and omelets. Sometimes Christina and I would go there after school and split some of the dishes. I miss their soup. Walking further past Tesco Lotus they had this sushi place that we went to once and then tried to go again but they were closed.

Funny story: within the first few days that I was in Mahachai, a few of us teachers went to Tesco. I went to MK Restaurant by myself. It was pretty difficult ordering since I barely knew any Thai. I ended up just taking a guess and hoping that the dishes didn’t have meat it them. It worked. Later I found Christina and Teddy. They laughed at me, of course.

Truffle fries 💗

So, The White Oven, Two Ladies, Christina’s apartment, and Number 8 was on the way to Tesco Lotus. The White Oven was a western-styled restaurant that was overly priced but they had truffle fries which were mouthwatering. Two Ladies was not actually the real name of the place but two ladies worked there so that’s what we called it LOL. Number 8 was our favorite spot.When we’d go to Number 8, we’d have a feast. I actually don’t know if that was the name of it either. As you can tell we made up names for a lot of places.

Cafe’ n Garden and Jaidee were close to Indria’s. Cafe’ n Garden had BAGELS. They didn’t have cream cheese so that was sad. I’d go there on weekends for help with my hangover.

Mahachai 💕

Central Plaza Mahachai had a Homegoods store, Robinsons, Uniqlo, Starbucks, and a few other good stores. Taking a taxi was only about fifteen minutes (with all of the traffic).

The train station that we’d sometimes take to Bangkok was about a fifteen minute walk from my apartment and past the school. Walking through the fish market was always interesting (and smelly).

Three Girls and A Boy was our weekend spot. They hated waiting on us though because we couldn’t speak Thai. That was on Ekachai Road too but looking at my apartment on a map, it was to the left. We rarely went to that side of town.

Baantoon was another weekend spot that was on the main road. They had AMAZING Pad See Ew. Ahhhh. I ache for it sometimes.

Mahachai Hospital was about a twenty minute walk from me which I found out when I walked there at 5am.. food poisoning. Over that way they also had a night market, which I regret never going to, and a yummy sushi restaurant that we went to a few times.

Huge snail

Christina, Indria, and I went to this “Michelin Star” restaurant called Ruean Panya Restaurant. We got a bunch of seafood and almost got attacked by a dog. I say “Michelin Star” because it was pretty crappy food.

So, off I was to the hospital after being in Mahachai for less than a month. I was given some meds then went home and slept. I think my favorite part of going to the restaurant was that when we were leaving we saw this huge snail.

Thailand was cool for many reasons, as I have mentioned.

7-eleven is a huge thing in Thailand. They don’t have as many as Japan. Off the top of my head I can think of one 7/11 near Indria, one across the street from my school, two near Christina’s, one near the van stop, and maybe three or four near the train station/fish market.

Christmas at Nampu Plaza.. How cute?!

Nampu Plaza was also a great little building that was less than five minutes from school. They had a DQ and KFC. Sometimes after school we’d go and get ourselves a little treat at DQ.

They usually had T-shirts for sale right when you walked in. Upstairs was the food court. They had som tam and fried rice with shrimp and veggies. Delish. On the other floors, they had video games, and a great DIY store. DIY had everything..from tools to house supplies to party favors and containers.

Haven Outdoorism was a cute spot. It was on Ekachai Road. They had camping gear and yummy Pad Thai. Nutty Cake which was this dessert place we went to a few times was right across the street from it. A few doors down from Haven was another bar called Saan D Me Bar. We went there a few times. They had live music too, wooo. We went there every once in a while and also the night of my 26th birthday. It was a hoppin’ place.

So they had motorbike stops at basically every corner in Mahachai. I would walk by six stops on the way to Tesco. You’d just tell them where you were going and hop on. I became friends with the guys at two of the stops because I walked by so frequently. We’d just say hello and I’d be on my merry way.

Overall, Mahachai had some great spots and succulent food. I’m excited to talk about Thai food. That will be another post because I have maaaany pictures.