If you are ever in Thailand you will always get served 4 Thai Condiments. They usually come with your food on a little plate with 4 little dishes, you might wonder what they are or just never used them. But I use one of them ALL the time for my Thai cooking.
- Prik Nam Pla – My favorite Thai condiment that I use for all Thai food is Thai chili (“prik”) with fish sauce (“nam pla”). Put two thirds of a cup of chopped Thai chili peppers in a 1 pint jar, and fill with fish sauce. Seal and keep for a week before using. Some people like this fresh some people like theirs after a few days. I like mine after few days. Also there are variations to this sauce some add lime juice or brown sugar as well. I prefer the basic version.
The other 3 I do not use as much but here they are. Some restaurants also serve other chili sauces as condiments but these are the usual 3 you get.
- Prik Dong – Put two thirds of a cup of chopped Thai chili peppers in a 1 pint jar, and fill with white rice vinegar.
- Plain white sugar – You add sugar to a Thai dish if it is too spicy. It might happen that if you are in Thailand and you are going to a touristy place your food will be pretty sweet. That is because they have added sugar to the dish to make it less spicy. If you do not want them to do this you have to tell them you want “Thai spicy” to make sure you get authentic Thai food.
- Ground Chili Powder – This is the 4th condiment on the little plate, just add some of this if you want it more spicy.
Thai chilies or also called Bird’s eye chili are one of the hottest chills out there, so once you have been cutting these please make sure you wash your hands really well. I even recommend using gloves cutting these things.
You can buy bird chilies in most grocery stores but if they don’t; carry it you might have to go to an Asian grocery stores. I pack them in plastic wrap and freeze them in zip-lock bags for later use.