In The Family
Home Cooking the Bangkok Way
Preserved radish is an underrated and underused ingredient. Even when it’s used sparingly—almost like a condiment—as in pad thai, its absence would be acutely felt by anyone familiar with how pad thai is traditionally made in the city. But preserved radish can be so much more than a sideshow. For example, it goes famously well with eggs, as this dish demonstrates. The omelet, which is studded with soft, chewy preserved radish slivers, is pan-fried, but the basil leaves are deep-fried—a perfect interplay of flavors and textures. Preserved radishes are sold both salted and sweet. Be sure to get the latter for this dish.
Rice crackers, khao tang, are the traditional (and the best-tasting) vehicle for this creamy, flavorful dip. Together, they form this old-school dish that is still very much in demand, even though the city is flooded with all kinds of modern appetizers these days. The dip looks reddish but is not—should not be—hot. The color comes from river prawn tomalley, which also contributes extra creaminess and flavor.
Anna Hezel is the senior editor of TASTE.