Though we call it a salad with all of the freshness from lime, mint leaves and coriander, Larb can be eaten with sticky rice or different vegetables such as cabbage. Try this Laab recipe as a side dish for your meal or as the main coarse…simply delicious!
Thai salads often do not have raw vegetables or fruit as their main ingredient but they use (minced) meat, seafood, or noodles instead. Similar to salads in the West, these dishes have in common that they (often) use a souring agent (in Thailand usually lime juice) and feature the addition of fresh herbs and other greens in their preparation. Thai salads are not served as entrées but normally eaten as one of the main dishes in a Thai buffet-style meal, together with rice (depending on the region this can be glutinous rice or non-glutinous rice) or the Thai rice noodle called khanom chin. Specialised khao tom kui (plain rice congee) restaurants also serve a wide variety of Thai salads of the yam type as side dishes. Many Thai salads, for instance the famous som tam, are also eaten as a meal or snack on their own.
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As it is with larb, this is a famous and well loved Issarn dish. You should be able to spot the similar characteristics simply by looking at the ingredients and how it is served. Only the freshest and very good quality beef should be used for this dish; We like to use either rump or beef fillets, the latter of course will cost a little more but it sure makes a huge difference to the final dish.
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Spicy Green Papaya Salad (som tum or som tam) is a popular dish from the North Eastern part of Thailand (the largely rural Isan region) that combines spicy, sour and sweet flavours to make a classic dish. It is often served alongside barbecue or grilled chicken and a portion of sticky rice.
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