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Som Tam Papaya Salad

A popular Thai street food

eaten at any time as a snack or a salad !

A Dish very popular in my family !!

As I am write this Blog , Its hard to express , how I am craving for those unforgettable memories in the streets & the Food courts of Bangkok , savouring this yummy

concoction, made by the Squick , expert hands ...with all the thai food aromas & thai music floating around me , ah , I am indeed in my dream world now !!

How I wish if my crystal ball could tell me now , when next I will be in Thailand !!

But Alas ! the best I can do , to quench my thirst & my travel bug urges is by bringing Bangkok into my Garden !!

Heres my recipe ( acquired from my visual experiences of watching it so closely made and a bit of help from my Thai friends & their local house chefs )

Raw Papayas fresh from my backyard Papaya tree with all the sauces I always always carry back from my Thailand travels ❤️

Green papaya or Raw papaya is often used as a tenderiser to meats .

It is a commonly used fruit vegetable in South-East Asian countries like Thailand .

very popular as a street food salad called “Som-Tam

Som tam is a spicy salad that is made from shredded green and firm papaya. it is dressed with a sweet, sour, and spicy dressings. originated from the northeast of the Kingdom. Som Tam is assembled in a mortar in which the vegetables and papaya are slightly crushed together, marrying the flavours and juices !!

it’s also added to curries & stews , but the raw salad makes a wonderfully refreshing accompaniment to other spicy Thai dishes as part of a thai meal or on its own as a street snack !

Important Tip here -

Bruising the green papaya helps it soften and absorb the other spices & get to blend the flavour and bring out some he tastes of each spice used .


  • 1/2 a medium / large green papaya, seeds removed, and shredded (about 3 heaped cups)

  • 2 Tbs palm sugar or brown sugar

  • 1Tbsp tamarind pulp

  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce

  • 4 cloves garlic

  • 2-3 dried chillies

  • 1 Tbs dried shrimp( optional )

  • 1 Tbs plus 1 tsp fish sauce( optional )

  • 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice ( keep wedges)

  • 2-3 thin green beans

  • 10 small cherry tomatoes, halved

For garnish on the prepared salad -

  • 1 fresh red Thai chile or another chilli, finely sliced (leave seeds in if you like it extra spicy)

  • 3 Tbs coarsely chopped roasted and salted peanuts

Method to prepare -:

•Heat a small pot of water bring to boiling and blanch the green beans for 3 minutes , then refresh under cold water or drop into an ice bath to further stop the cooking . When Cool roughly chop into about 3cm pieces.keep aside to garnish .

•In a pestle and mortar, pound the sugar, garlic and dried shrimp to a fine paste.

•Add the fish sauce and lime juice and mix until it’s well combined.

•add to the mortar the following in order -

•Shredded & de-seeded green papaya cut or into fine julienne (about 3 cups )

• the green beans, •chopped cilantro stem

• soaked & de-seeded chilli •and Halved cherry tomatoes.

now lightly pound all together all the above added items , in order to get the tastes to blend well , Toss to combine. while pounding . mixture should be lightly bruised & well combined .

When you are ready to serve, pour over the dressing and toss to thoroughly coat. Sprinkle over the chopped peanuts (roasted & coarse pounded peanuts) & sliced red chilli 🌶 to garnish & serve the salad as part of Thai food !!

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