Thai street food

Clew is in a Thai mood with our photographer Lisbeth Ganer’s fabulous photo series from Bangkok. This week’s focus is on food, so let’s not content ourselves to looking at food photos – let’s make Thai food!

Street food is a huge must when in Bangkok, but if you’re not going there any time soon, cook it yourself, for example with the help of Michelin-starred chef David Thompson, the Australian who ended up a/the leading expert on Thai food.


Photo by Lisbeth Ganer. ©2015 Lisbeth Ganer

Crab stir-fried rice (kao pat bpuu)

Ingredients (serves 1)

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • large pinch of salt
  • 60 ml(¼ cup) vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 185 g(1 cup) cold cooked jasmine rice
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • a large pinch of white sugar
  • large pinch of ground freshly white pepper
  • 3 green spring onions, cleaned and chopped
  • fresh coriander
  • 50 g cooked crab meat


  1. Place the garlic and salt in a mortar and pestle and pound into a paste.
  2. Heat a wok over medium-high heat. Add the oil and garlic and cook until the garlic just starts to colour a little.
  3. Crack the egg into the wok and stir until lightly scrambled, then push to the side of the wok.
  4. Add the cold rice, then stir until the rice is well coated in the egg.
  5. Add the soy sauce, sugar, pepper, spring onion and most of the coriander and toss until well combined and the rice is hot. Serve sprinkled with the remaining coriander, cucumber and lime wedges
 © Aoo3771 |

Illustration © Aoo3771 |

You may also serve with nahm prik plaa in a separate bowl: Simply combine chopped red and green scud chillies, thinly sliced garlic and a squeeze of lime juice to a bowl of fish sauce.

And as always when you stir-fry, have all your ingredients next to you and ready to be tossed in.

Hot and sour prawn soup (tom yum goong)

Ingredients (serves 3 -4):

  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • good pinch of salt
  • pinch of white sugar
  • 1 large tomato, cut into quarters & deseeded (optional)
  • 1 dried long red chilli, coarsely chopped
  • 8 – 12 raw prawns in their shells
  • 3 – 5 stalks of lemongrass, trimmed
  • 4 – 5 kaffir lime leaves, roughly torn
  • 2 – 3 slices of galangal
  • 5 red shallots, peeled
  • 4 – 5 coriander roots, cleaned
  • 5 – 10 green bird’s eye chillies, to taste (whoa, you might wanna’ go easy on the chillies – maybe use 2?)
  • 200g straw or oyster mushrooms, cleaned & trimmed
  • 1 – 2 tbsp tamarind water (optional)
  • 2- 4 tbsp lime juice, to taste
  • 1 – 2 tbsp fish sauce, to taste
  • 3 – 10 bird’s eye chillies, bruised (again, go easy unless you’re really used to hot hot food)
  • pinch of roasted chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp chopped coriander


  1. Bring the stock to the boil, season with the salt and sugar then add tomato and dried chilli. Simmer for several minutes until the tomato begins to break up
  2. Peel and devein the prawns, but leave the tails attached.
  3. Using a mortar and pestle, bruise the lemongrass, lime leaves, galangal, shallots, coriander roots and green bird’s eye chillis. Add these to the simmering stock, then cut or tear the mushrooms and add them too. Simmer for a minute or so until the mushrooms are tender before adding the prawns and tamarind water, if using. Simmer until the prawns are cooked – about 2 – 3 minutes.
  4. In a serving bowl, combine the lime juice with the fish sauce, chillies, chilli powder and coriander. Pour in the soup and stir thoroughly. It should taste equally hot, salt and sour – adjust the seasoning accordingly.
  5. Serve with steamed rice
© Ueapun |

Illustration © Ueapun |

For more Thai street food recipes from David Thompson, get the book on amazon.


Clew, January 2016. 

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