Before I came to Thailand, judging by the food that I sampled in Thai restaurants throughout the U.S., I thought Thai food was great. Upon arriving in Thailand and embarking on one of, if not the greatest gastronomical journey of my life, I can confidently say that Thai food is amazing.
Let’s start with the ‘beginner’ dish: pad thai. Wide egg noodles, shrimp/pork/chicken, egg, bean sprouts, fresh veggies and crushed peanuts, all glazed with a tangy brown sauce – an easy and tasty choice when transitioning from Western food. I ate this every day for the first 10 days we were on Ko Samui. Then I decided it was time to be more adventurous… a little spicier.
–Marinated ground beef in chili sauce with rice
–Stir-fried pork with sweet basil and chilis
–Crispy pork with stir-fried kale (extra spicy)
–Hot green curry with chicken and veggies, served over rice
–Noodle man soup with dumplings, slices of roasted pork (and of course…roasted red peppers)
…Needless to say, I am not going hungry here in Phuket. Who could go hungry in a country where the national pastime is snacking?
As a lover of all things spicy, I’ve been living the dream.
Kassie: “Sawadee ka. I’d like the green curry, please.”
Waitress: “Suh-picy or no suh-picy?”
Kassie: “VERY spicy.”
But I suppose all good things do come to an end.
This past weekend, after a week of particularly spicy dishes, my stomach felt as if it were imploding. Imagine a 2-liter bottle of water with some air left at the top. Now seal it off, turn it upside-down and watch the bubble of air rise. Now imagine that bubble in your stomach. When it gets to the top? Well, game over.
After some scolding from Morgan and a bit of contemplating whether a few more ‘extra spicy’ dishes were worth potential stomach ulcers, I decided to take it down a notch and avoid dishes that include the word ‘chillies’… for the time being. Eating non-spicy food is a surprisingly hard thing to do considering that the average Thai chef uses chili as a McDonald’s fry cook might use salt. Still, I can at least later say that I tried.
…Crispy pork with stir-fried kale (extra spicy)…mmm.
(PS. Visit my ‘Videos’ tab to see my K1 class in action!)