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Not Your Grandmother’s Pad Thai

I’m lucky to live in Boston where our foodie culture is hot and thriving.  I live to eat and am lucky to explore dining options of my city, which are varied and rich. I also love to cook, and as my friends tell me, it’s a good thing that I do.

One of my most favorite ethnic dining and cooking pursuits is Thai. Like the language, it’s complex to learn. Thai cooking requires planning, prep and an understanding of how flavors blend together to make the experience more than the sum of its parts.

For nearly two decades, I have been fortunate to have a remarkable friend who loves Thai cooking as much as I do, and now dedicates his life to researching recipes, teaching the fundamental building blocks of Thai cuisine and making it available through stunning photography, step by step instructions and ingredient substitutions when asked. Harder for the American kitchen, but actually, that’s the fun of the process.

 Rustic Fish Curry

Rustic Grilled Thai Fish Curry in Banana Leaves (Snakehead Fish)
(ngohp bplaa chaawn

Hanuman Aspler of Thaifoodmaster.com, is building a team of researchers and chefs who are as passionate about the ingredients as they are the process. This is beyond making the familiar Thai dishes of Pad Thai and Basil Chicken, changed up for the American palate. Instead, it is a rare opportunity to study traditional cooking gleaned from vintage recipes from his travels around Thailand. It’s worth the hunt and the time and effort that goes into creating these dishes for any foodie.

  Hanuman In Kitchen

Hanuman

Hanuman Aspler of Thaifoodmaster.com

Chef Gorn

(Chef Gorn)

Partner, Research, Recipe Development

Regular Contributor         
Thaifoodmaster.com

 

Than Khun

Thaan Khun 

Thapakorn Lertviriyavit

Regular Contributor, Consultant
Thaifoodmaster.com

 

Ton

Noppadol Srinorakut (Ton)

Software developer and Internet Business

Master taster of everything yummy at Thaifoodmaster.com

 Sweet Rice Flakes

Sweet Pounded Unripe Rice Flakes Cereal with Coconut Flesh and Banana

                       


Rose Petals Salad

A few years ago, I had the fortune of sitting in Hanuman’s kitchen, pounding chilies to make a favorite snack called Tort Mun. It’s a spicy fish cake with a sweet chili sauce. Creating a red chili paste from scratch rather than arming a can opener, it is a labor intensive procedure and well worth the time and effort. This simple dish is now the standard of which I judge all others.

Karen Pounding Chilis

An added bonus of this unique site, are the spectacular and compelling photos that accompany the food. This visual sensory tour creates an expectation for which careful study and practice will yield results making your fellow diners eyes roll. Thaifoodmaster.com is exceptional instructional Thai cuisine documented with reverence for beautiful and fresh ingredients, researched from the far corners of Thailand and its rich history.

Cheaper than a plane ticket, but well worth the effort to master one of these dishes in your own kitchen.

The Cowardly Gardner

Pesto

The Cowardly Gardner

While bicycling to work, I ride past bountiful victory gardens filled with ripe tomatoes, corn and beans. I admit, I’m jealous. I vowed to grow something this year, beyond the catnip in its little white container, that no matter where I place the damn thing, my cat always seems to consistently give it haircuts. This year I planted herbs. From my local grocery store, I procured three tiny pots of basil. About 6 inches tall, I gently lowered them into the ground and hoped for the best. Holy Basil Batman! I have a bush!