Thai cuisine is one of the most popular cuisine in the world.It signifies a perfect blend of balance,detail and variety with emphasis on lightly prepared dishes with strong aromatic components and a spicy edge.
Important to Thai dining is the practice of khluk,mixing the flavors and textures of different dishes with the rice from one's plate.A Thai family meal would normally consist of rice with several dishes which should form a harmonious contrast of flavors and textures as well as preparation methods.Traditionally,a meal would have atleast five elements:a dip or relish for raw or cooked vegetables along with spicy chilli sauce.The fundamental taste senses the overall meal:sour,sweet,salty,bitter and spicy.
Nonetheless,rice being staple food of Thai,Thai fried rice ,this mouth watering and sumptuous dish can be called the signature dish.It comes from Central Thai Cuisine of the flat and wet central rice growing plains.
Thai Fried Rice with coconut sauce
A vibrantly flavoured green curry paste is at the heart of the Thai Fried Rice. The paste, which is used to flavour both the rice and the coconut sauce, is a blend of myriad flavours derived from tangy lemon, ginger, onions, garlic, coriander and some spices too. Rice cooked with crunchy vegetables, soy sauce and green curry paste is shaped into a ring, which is filled with the flavoured coconut sauce, making this a sumptuous meal that turns out to be an unforgettable experience for the taste buds.
For the green curry paste
1.Combine all the ingredients and blend in a mixer to a fine paste, using enough water (approx. ½ cup). Keep aside.
For the rice
1.Heat the oil in a wok or a kadhai, add the spring onion whites and sauté on a medium flame for 1 to 2 minutes.
2.Add the baby corn and sauté on a medium flame for 1 minute.
3.Add the capsicum, spring onion greens and sauté on a medium flame for 1 minute.
4.Add the green chillies and 2 tbsp of the prepared green curry paste, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute.
5.Add the rice, salt and pepper, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute.
6.Add the soya sauce, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 to 2 minutes. Keep aside.
For the coconut sauce:
1.Heat the oil in a broad non-stick pan and add the cumin seeds.
2.When the seeds crackle, add the spring onion whites and sauté on a medium flame for 1 minute.
3.Add the green chillies, spring onion greens and sauté on a medium flame for 1 minute.
4.Add the coconut milk, lemon juice, salt and ¼ cup of water and ½ tsp of the prepared green curry paste, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 2 minutes, while stirring continuously. Keep aside.
How to proceed
1.Put the rice into a 7" ring mould and spread it evenly.
2.Invert the ring over a serving plate and tap sharply to unmould the rice.
Pour the coconut sauce in the centre or in a bowl and serve immediately, garnished with spring onion greens.
By Ritu Arora