These are the crunchy fresh sprouts of the mung bean, called Thua Ngok in Thai and
found in most vegetable markets, though canned ones can be substituted.
The pods or large black seeds are used to flavour and garnish many dishes; it is
also used in ground form.
Several different types of chilli (Phrik) are used in Thai cooking. As a general
rule, the smaller the chilli, the hotter it is. The hottest of all are the tiny red
or green Phrik Khi Nu, followed by the slightly larger Phrik Chi Fa. Dried chilli’s
(Phrik Haeng) and ground chilli powder (Phrik Pon) are also used.
Called Phak Chi in Thai, this is essential to many Thai dishes. Not only are the
leaves used, but also the stems, roots and seeds, all of which impart a different
The milk of the coconut (Maphrao), made by grating the white flesh, soaking it in
boiling water, and then squeezing out liquid through a fine sieve, is used in many
soups and curries and so is the cream, the top layer which forms after making the
Thai cucumbers (Taeng Kwa), smaller than the western variety, are served raw as an
accompaniment to several dishes.
As its Thai name, Phak Chi Lao, suggests, this is often used in Lao cooking, which
means it also appears in a number of dishes from the northeastern region.
Small round Green Eggplant
In a tiny form called Makhuea Phuang, Thai small round green eggplants impart a much-prized
bitter flavour to many curries. Since these are difficult to find outside Thailand,
small green tomatoes or peas are often substituted, although the taste will be different