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Thai Vinaigrette Dressing
Why It's safer and more enjoyable to make your own sauces and dressings
One of the first and nicest experiences I had with Southeast Asian cuisine was when I was on a road trip with a
Laotian friend. They had bags of wonderful fruits that I had never experienced before and yet were extremely delicious. It happened again when I went to Thailand in 2014. My new Thai in-law family picked me up and were agreeable to a road trip from Bangkok to Chiang Mai so that I could see the countryside. Somewhere along the way they also pulled out some new fruits I had never had before with a dipping sauce and or dipping powder.
My wife recently posted a fruit dish which I will post below so that it doesn't mess up the flow of the read. The thing that made the dish wonderful was the tangy vinaigrette pepper dressing. It has a beautiful presentation and photographed really well, and I thought I would be remiss not to include it in our sauces and dressings category.
The Advantages of Making Your Own Sauces and Dressings, Especially With Southeast Asian Cuisine
The British became as strong as they did largely because
they figured out the value of the rich variety of spices available in Southeast Asia. They established the East India Trading Company in 1600 and changed the trajectory of the global trading scene. It's hard to overstate the value brought by having rich organic and diverse natural resources. It is even arguably the stabilizing force that makes these countries so much more peaceful than desert countries. See this Discover magazine article, Are The Desert People Winning, which shows why anthropologically, countries with rich food resources are so much more peaceful.
Simpler, Healthier Sauces and Dressings
Back to the topic of recipes. If you read the back of a sauce or dressing, it is alarming the amount of ingredients put in it. The fact that I don't know what half of them are sometimes is compounded by the fact that often when it comes to buying anything we have to maintain the buyer beware mentality. I even told one of my patient's yesterday that I personally always maintain this mindset even when it comes to my doctors. Two months ago a private doctor told me that I needed surgery on a lump in my abdomen. I went to the Indian hospital for a second opinion and found out via a non-invasive ultrasound that the lump was just a lipoma and that surgery would just create unnecessary scars and that lipomas just grow back. And going to the Indian hospital is always free since I am a card carrying Cherokee. Good Save Adam!
When you make your own dressing you know exactly what you are putting in and exactly what your motives are putting it in, nervous chuckle. You can save money and show off your culinary skills when you make your own stuff. The ingredients are usually cheap, and you can make extra to give to friends and or boost moral at work. Most people in the United States have not tried most of the wonderful exotic foods from Thailand, and I have found that it is and uplifting group experience to try something new like a pepper dressing as it is not something you would typically see in western cuisine. I recommend growing your own herbs as well for added fun!
Even when traveling in Southeast Asia now you will want to consider making your own because the cleaner more modern places often use more chemicals and the more remote simple places often don't wash their hands and food enough.
Uses for the Thai Vinaigrette Dressing
While Thai fruits are often dipped in sauces, this recipe is too liquid for that and is best served poured over a crisp fruit. Something like a banana could be used but may be too soft and have a consistency that is unpleasant. Below is the recipe for the dressing and below that is a recipe we recommend for this dressing.
- • ½ cup white vinegar
- • ½ cup Truvia sweetener
- • ½ teaspoon salt
- • 3 crushed fresh (red) Thai chili
- Heat a small saucepan to medium, add white vinegar and Truvia and cook until it is boiling and thick and add crush fresh Thai chili.
- Turn off the stove and let the saucepan sits on the stove and cool the temperature down. The sauce would be thicker after it is cool.
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