To Thai people, ‘Pla Thu’ or the short-bodied mackerel, conjures up images of the popular salted steamed fish in traditional bamboo steamers from Mae Klong sub-district in Samut Songkhram province, Crowned ‘The king of Pla Thu’, strict rules deem that only fish caught within a2 25-kilometer range of the Mae Klong River Estuary’s plankton rich ecosystem can be labeled ‘Pla Thu Mae Klong’,
Between July and October, floods attract Pla Thu to feed in the area,. When properly nourished, these slim, transparent fish lings mature into the unique tasting firm, aromatic fish high in Omega oils. The flesh also remains sweet due to traditional methods of ‘ catching’ Pha Thu in understanding the brackish estuary’s water currents, wind’s flow, terrain, and Pla Thu is good and versatile, as it can be steamed then pan-fried and served with shrimp paste chill dip (Nam phrik Kapi), boiled in Tom Yam Pla Thu and braised Mae Klong-style (Pla Thu Satia). High in Omega-3 oils, Pla Thu nourishes the eyes, prevents heart disease, and controls blood sugar levels.
Being one of the best-known products of Mae Klong, there is an annual ‘Pla Thu Mae Klong Festival’ in December at the City Hall of Samut Songkhram province.
For more information, contact the Samut Songkhram Chamber of Commerce Tel. 0 3471 8154, or the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Samut Songkhram office Tel. +66 (0) 3475 2847-8
Where to Buy
Talat Mae Klong (Mae Klong Fresh Market)
Mae Klong Sub-district, Mueang Samut Songkhram District, Samut Songkhram
Saphan Pla Krung Thep (Bangkok Fish Market)
Soi Charoen Krung 62, Sathon District, Bangkok
Tel. : +66 (0) 2211 6059, +66 (0) 2211 4394
Where to Eat
Daeng Seafood (Chao Kao)
Must try : Pla Thu Sa Tia, Tom Yam Pla Thu Chalamet Thot Nam Pla, Hoi Lot Phat Cha
Address : 152 Mu 1, Rama 2 Rd., Bang Kaeo Sub-district, Mueang Samut Songkhram District, Samut Songkhram
Tel. + 66 (0) 3476 9765
Must try : Nam Phrik Ka pi Pla Thu Thot, Khanom Chin Nam Phrik, Kaeng Khiao Wan
Address : 59/1 Wireless Rd., Pathum Wan District, Bangkok
Tel. +66 (0) 2252 7637
Kung Mae Nam
Giant River Prawn
‘Kung Mae Nam' are a rich source of zinc and selenium good for immunity and contain low fat and zero saturated fat. Kung Mae Nam are giant freshwater prawns found in clean rivers. The prawns are commonly used in salads and the hot and sour Tom Yam soup. But grilled freshwater prawns are the most popular form of prawn dishes and usually accompanied with the fiery seafood sauce.
Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya and Suphan Buri provinces boast the biggest stocks of giant freshwater prawns
Kung Mae Nam Ayutthaya
With Phra Nakhon si Ayutthaya province situated at the confluence of the Chao Phraya. Pasak and Lop Buri Rivers. its waters are teeming with Kung Mae Nam. But overfishing resulted In dwindling freshwater prawn stocks after 196 This worried Her Majesty the Queen who ordered a major systematic breeding program in 1980 at her Bang Sai Arts and crafts Center with the help of the Department of Fisheries. The prawns from the breeding program were released to their natural habits between 1982 and 1986, and ever since they have grown in numbers in the old city's Sena and Mueang Phra Nakhon si Ayutthaya districts and nearby provinces like Sing Buri and Pathum Thani.
Where to Eat
Ton Nam River View
Must try: Kung Phao, Pla Nam Ngoen Yang Si-io, Kung Phla That Man Pla Krai, Po Taek.
Address : 26/7 Mu 6, Soi Thetsaban 6, Thetsaban Rd., Ban Len Sub-district, Bang Pa-in District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya
Tel. +66 (0) 3526 1006, +66 (0) 3526 2398
Ruay Kung Phao
Must try : Chu-chi Pla Nam Ngoen, Choeng Plakrai Thot Krathiam, Tom Yam Kam Kung Nam Khon, Kung Phao
Address : 3418, Mai Tra Sub-district, Bang Sai district, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya
Tel. + 66 (0) 3574 1042, + 66 (0) 8 6007 1451
Eat (eat all Thai)
Must try : Kung Mae Nam Ayuthaya Phao, Tom Yam Pla Thu Yang Madan , Khai Tun Koei
Address : 2nd Fl., Pathum Wan District, Bangkok
Tel. +66 (0) 2251 1230
Baan Khanitha by the River
Must try : Kung Ayuttha ya Phat Sauce Makham Ou Phat Phong Kari, Mastaman Kai.
Address : 2194 Asiatique, Charoen Krung Rd., Bang Kho Laem District, Bangkok
Tel. +66 (0) 2108 4910-11
Steamed Pork Roll
‘Mu Yo’, the spicier Thai version of Vietnamese steamed pork roll can be found in locations with sizable Vietnamese settlers. The most famous is ‘Mu Yo Ubon’ from Sri Narong Road, Mueang Ubon Ratchathani district, Ubon Ratchathani province where the earliest Vietnamese imigrants lived.
Though modern manufacturers use modern machinery to process the meat, it was traditionally made by pounding chopped pork in a mortar to a smooth stichky paste. Seasoned with salt, pepper, sugar, and shallots, some places add chewy silvers of pork skin for textural contrast. The meat is carefully rooled up in These bouncy peppry meatloaves can be eaten cold, fried, or made into spicy salads (Yam), used in Vietnamese dishes; such as, Kuai Chap Yuan (noodle soup), Khai Krata (eggs with Mu Yo and Kunchiang). And Pak Mo Yuan (stuffed steamed rice pancakes), and even in Northeastern dishes like Tam Mua, Tam Sua a variation of green papaya salad (Som Tam).
Where to Buy
Mu Yo Dao Thong
173/2-3 Si Narong Rd., Mueang Ubon Ratchathani District, U Bon Ratchathani
Tel. : +66 (0) 4526 2344
Talat Sam Yan (Sam Yan Market)
Soi Chula 9, Rama 4 Rd., Pathum Wan District, Bangkok
Tel. +66 (0) 2215 3662, +66 (0) 2215 4664
Talat Or Tor Kor (Marketing Organization for Farmers Market)
Kamphaeng Phet Rd., Chatuchack District, Bangkok
Tel. +66 (0) 2279 2080
‘Khai Khem’ (salted eggs) is a traditional preserved food made by pickling fresh eggs in brine, coating them with earth from salt fats, and other types of mud-based mixtures depending on the local wisdom in each area The most famous salted eggs in Thailand bar none is ‘Khai Khem Chaiya’ from the southern province of Surat Thani.
Chaiya district is a rich fertile farmland ‘where fields are filled with rice and its waters teem with fish’. Villagers raise free-range ducks that forage for fish, shellfish and crabs in the fields and water ways, supplemented by unhulled rice. Fresh duck eggs are coated with a unique salted anthill soil mixture and a covering of fine rice husk ash before being packed into boxes for sale. These midly salty eggs with minimal egg whites prized for their deliciously oily large bright orange yolks are perfect fried and served with spicy food or hardboiled and eaten with rice porridge. Its popularity has grown to the point that these eggs, previously only sold behind Chaiya Railway Station, can now be found in stores nationwide.
Where to Buy
Khai Khem Mae Bun Hai
53/3 Mu 4, Pa We Sub-district, Chaiya District, Surat Thani
Tel. : +66 (0) 8 5726 1349
Maphrao Nam Hom
‘Maphrao Nam Hom’ or aromatic coconut is a special breed noted for its particularly fragrant juice and flesh, and has anti-aging qualities that make it popular among Thais and foreigners alike.
Most coconut planted for thir juice are ‘ Maphrao Nam Wan’ , which is sweeter but less aromatic than ‘Maphrao Nam Hom’. This dwarf species is planted mostly in the provinces of Chachoengsao, Samut Sakhon, and Samut Songkhram.
‘Maphrao Nam Hom’, of the ‘Kon Chop’ (‘pleated bottom’) variety is primarily planted in Ban Phaeo district, Samut Sakhon province, and Damnoen Saduak district, Ratchaburi province, as it yields large fruit demanded by the market.
Maphrao Nam Hom Sam Phran from Sam Phran district, Nakhon Pathom Province is another variety of aromatic coconut that is increasingly rar today. These small, round coconuts that proliferate in large numbers in dwarf trees are delicious in having soft, delicate flesh, a distinct aroma, and sweet juice from bing grown in fertile well-watered soil. Therefore, this species of coconut should be preserved and planted for future generations.
“Week of Maphrao Nam Hom Sam Phran Nakhon Pathom” is organized by the Aromatic Coconut Association of Wat Rai Khing and Rai Khing Municipal Office every year from the end of December until January.
For more information, contact the Public Relations Department of Nakhon Pathom Province, Nakhon Pathom provincial Government center
Tel. +66 (0) 3434 0011
Where to Buy
The Maphrao Nam Hom Group
92 Mu 8, Bang Chang Sub-district, Sam Phran District, Nakhon Pathom
Tel : +66 (0) 3429 5027, +66 (0) 3430 7207
Where to Eat
Talat Nam Don Wai (Don Wai Floating Market)
Don Wai-Phutthamonthon Rd., Bang Kra Tuek Sub-district, Sam Phran District, Nakhon Pathom.
Talat Or Tor Kor (Marketing Organization for Famers Market)
Kamphaeng Phet Rd., Chatuchak District, Bangkok
Tel : + 66 (0) 2279 2080
As the world’s largest Thurian exports, Thailand’s fertile soil and numerous breeds of this King of Fruits was able to export 271,948 tons worth 4,662 billion Baht in 2011, primarily destined for China, its Largest market. The chinese have now coined a saying, “There’s nothing as delicious as Thurian” from their traditional saying, “There’s nothing as delicious as Kiao (dumplings).” When durian season arrives, make sure you taste these famus breeds.
Historically famous for its Thurian and other fruit grown in the fertile silt soil, Thurian Nonthaburi is particularly noted for its smooth, rich, sweet, soft flesh unlike any other province. After the 1995 floods decimated the orchards, Thurian Nonthaburi growers replanted bestselling ‘ Mon Thong’ and ‘ Kan Yao’ breeds which have thin skin and are easy to peel.
Nonthaburi is famous for its Kan Yao, which flourishes in the rich soil and is irrigated with fresh water from canals linking to the Chao Phraya River. Grown in small orchards, farmers only use traditional folk methods, adding only natural fertilizer and compost of Thong Lang Leaves at the base of the trees.
Though delicious Thurian Nonthaburi are intensely aromatic, sweet fill-bodied, they are not cultivated widely today, and can only be found in these three sub-districts: Sai Ma, Bang Rak Noi, and Ban Krang.
“Chanthaburi Fruit Festival” is held from 23-31 May every year.
For more information, Contact: TAT Rayong office Tel. +66 (0) 3865 5420-1
Where to Buy
74/23 Bang Rak Noi Sub-district, Mueang Nonthaburi District, Nonthaburi
Tel. : +66 (0) 8 9695 0037
Suan Lung Sawaeng Nak Nak
Mu 1, Bang Rak Noi Sub-district, Mueang Nonthaburi
Tel. : +66 (0) 8 5921 8628
Thurian Nio Thong (Yaowarat)
Across from Soi Plaeng Nam, Yaowarat Rd., Samphanthawong District, Bangkok
Tel. : +66 (0) 8 5 666 6428