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Fresh Rice Noodles?

Someone I met mentioned there's a place in North Portland which makes fresh rice noodles. I will check it out and if it's any good will post the address here.

I tried Fubonn for the basil. They have all the great astringent and sour Vietnamese herbs, but no holy basil. I've heard that a few of the farmers markets carry holy basil in the summertime. I have some seeds and will also try to grow it myself.


Apr 07, 2011
cee in Metro Portland

Fresh Rice Noodles?

Hello Portland!
I recently moved to your fine city from Bangkok, Thailand. I've been here a few months but have not yet found a place which sells wide rice noodles (chow fun noodles, sen yai, kway teow, เส้นใหญ่, 粿条) which have not been refrigerated.

I have found a few in fridges so far, which imo ruins them. In Thailand and other parts of Asia, you get them sold at room temperature, made fresh that day. They're either pre-cut or sold in sheets which you cut yourself. Once you refrigerate them, they harden and lose their great chewy texture.

I'm also looking for a good source of holy basil (bai gra prao). Any leads welcome!


For the Thai speakers, if there are any: เมืองนี้มีก๋วยเตี๋ยวเส้นใหญ่สดไม่ค่ะ

Mar 23, 2011
cee in Metro Portland

Thai sticky sweet rice - need to rinse?

soak 2 hours to overnight, no need to rinse (soaking cleans it enough)

Apr 27, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Help me find this restaurant in Bangkok

How long was the walk roughly? Was it a 2 floor Chinese restaurant with fish tanks by the door? Give some more details (what kind of restaurant, what did you eat, how many stories, etc) and I can perhaps help. I know that neighborhood well enough.

Apr 27, 2008
cee in China & Southeast Asia

Golden Phoenix Thai brown rice

You may not be able to find that brand, but you can mix it yourself. Try asking the owner at Bangkok Grocery where to find the red rice. You can buy hom mali rice from him too. Getting "new" hom mali is more fragrant (khao mai). Many home-cooks in Thailand mix their rice at home if they eat anything other than white.

Mar 31, 2008
cee in Manhattan

Substitution for lemongrass??

IMO there is no substitution for lemongrass. Sure you'll replace the citrus-y part of it by using zest of lime or lemon but you can't substitute the taste or aroma of lemongrass.

I second Val's suggestion - try an Asian grocery if you have one nearby.

Mar 12, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Bangkok Restaurant for 30th Birthday

mahanaga is beautiful. another one is face:
food is at both places is thai for western palate (very mild) but the setting is really nice.

i really like (and frequently take guests to) taling pling on soi wat kaek (not sure what the soi is actually called, but it's nickname is wat kaek). off of silom. the setting is nice and cute and the food's good.

Feb 28, 2008
cee in China & Southeast Asia

Pad Thai--is it an authentically Thai dish?

To add something - not many Thais can actually make Pad Thai. It's not something people cook at home often. It's street food, something eaten as a snack or meal for under a dollar out on the sidewalk.

So, a dish which everyone's mom + grandma might have their own recipe and varies from region to region might be Thailand's most famous dish (here in Asia and within Thailand anyway), Tom Yum. Tom Yum is a spicy sour soup and it really does have a hundred variations. And cooks can talk for hours on the best way to make it.

Feb 26, 2008
cee in General Topics

shrimp with red curry paste and coconut milk

Those two brands are available in Asian markets. I used to buy them when I lived in the US. Absolutely worth the trip to get the better coconut milk. And while you're there, you can get the lime leaves, thai basil and curry paste.

Feb 21, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

shrimp with red curry paste and coconut milk

Hi eLizard,
The brand of coconut milk you use is *very* important. I recommend two brands from Thailand: Chao Koh (Island People) and Mae Ploy. Don't shake the can like it suggests, but instead use the cream which floats to the top to fry the paste. If you want Thai taste, you'll need about 2-3x that amount of curry paste.

Don't follow the directions about boiling the paste. Fry the cream until it cracks (you'll see oil separating) then add the paste. Fry (and stir well) on medium heat until you sneeze and it smells good - about 5 minutes. Then add the rest of the coconut milk, fish sauce, lime leaves, etc. Taste it. You may need to add a bit of sugar, start with 1 teaspoon and add it a tea at a time. You may need to add a bit more fish sauce too.

When it tastes good, add the shrimp. Cook just until done and take off heat. Add the basil and serve.

Also, coconut milk from a can sometimes is very thick. If it's too thick, feel free to thin out the curry a bit with 1/4-1/2 can's worth of water.

And.. it doesn't matter what brand of Jasmine Rice you use. :P

Feb 21, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Thai Iced Tea Origins?

1. food colouring
2. spices. i believe star anise, cloves, and some other ** TOP SECRET ** ingredients (read: I'm not sure).

I'll ask around today and see if anyone knows what spices go in.

Feb 14, 2008
cee in General Topics

Thai Iced Tea Origins?

It's not Americanized at all -- you can get it served in plastic bags on the street pretty much anywhere in Thailand for about 20c.

Cha-Dam-Yen is without milk (tea black cold). What you are looking for is Cha-Nom-Yen (tea milk cold). There's also a Cha-Manao (tea lime) black or orange iced tea with sugar and lime juice.

On the street they have these giant steamers to heat the water with a large sock-like thing filed with orange tea powder. They make a very condensed tea and put it in a small cup. Add condensed milk (and sometimes white sugar too!) and mix. When mixed, pour over ice and top with evaporated milk.

My guess on origin is from India. I think it's a Thai version of masala chai. And yeah, the reason canned milk (both condensed and evaporated) is used is due to the heat. (82 degrees out as we speak, and it's 11pm)

Feb 14, 2008
cee in General Topics

Looking for a Mai Fun & A Hot chili Oil Recipe

My gf + I make a Chinese chili oil like this:

Toast a good handful of whole dried thai/sichuan chilies (about 3" in length, red) in a dry wok over medium heat until fragrant and browned, about 4-5 minutes (but watch that it doesn't burn)

Throw in a blender (or mash with mortar and pestle) with about 1-2 cloves of fresh garlic. (1/3 teaspoon?) Then add to an old jar and fill with oil. It should be about 1/2 solid to 1/2 oil, or maybe 1/3 to 2/3. Add about a 1/2 teaspoon sea salt. Stir well. Leave for a day or two for best results.

It's a bit different in that it has garlic and salt, but believe me, it's really good. Using dried chilies is better as it's got a fresher taste. Toasting them is important too. :) This will last months in the pantry, although it never lasts that long for us as we eat it fast.

Jan 29, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Thai sour curry (gaeng som) - too sour/spicy

You should add a bit of sugar to tone down the sour. When we make it from scratch we add palm sugar. I'm not sure if you're adding sugar at all when you cook, or if the canned version is sweet at all. If no to both, try adding some palm sugar (add a 1/2 tea at a time - we usually add a pretty large chunk). If you don't have palm sugar, you can use white or brown sugar.

There's not much you can do about the spice however. Unless of course you want to make it from scratch.

Here's our recipe if you feel like it:
That recipe will make it probably as spicy (or more) as the canned, so you should lower the amount of chilis. And add the tamarind juice slowly to taste.

You could try adding daikon radish too. Thais usually put Chinese turnip in which is similar to daikon radish. If you can find that it's even better.

Jan 20, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Healthy oil with high smoke point?

I use rice bran oil. It's light, has a super high smoke point, and is supposed to be healthier for you. I use it for the flavor (or lack of I should say) and the high smoke point. It's easy to get in the stores here in Thailand. :)

Jan 20, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Great restaurants *other* than Thai food in Bangkok?

I second Hanaya. Also, there's a community of Japanese on Thonglor (Sukhumvit soi 55) and the soi which connects 55 to 39 (Suk 55/13?) There are tons of Japanese restaurants for Japanese people there. Little hole in the wall ramen shops, restaurants, etc. I'd recommend checking out one of the more busy ones.
There's a couple Korean places there too.

Jan 16, 2008
cee in China & Southeast Asia

Good sides for Pad Thai

Pad Thai is a one-dish meal traditionally. Thais will eat it with a handful of raw bean sprouts and a few sprigs of garlic chives and sometimes a slice of raw banana flower. You mix the raw bean sprouts into the noodles (along with spicing the dish -- chili powder, lime juice, fish sauce to your taste). Then you nibble on the garlic chives and banana flower along with the dish.

Here's a picture which shows the second dish with the sprouts & garlic chives:

Tradition aside, I second the idea of a salad or some raw veggies. It's a greasy dish, and eating some raw cucumbers or Som Tum/papaya salad would make it less heavy.

Jan 14, 2008
cee in General Topics

Sweet Rice Question

Soak it for at least an hour or two. I usually soak overnight. Drain, and steam. The steamer that's linked from kpzoo's post works really well. If you can't get that, you can try cheesecloth in a steamer and cross your fingers. Steaming for 20-30 minutes should be enough. The grains should be translucent somewhat (no longer white) all the way through.

Also, keep covered while eating. As the rice dries it gets really sticky and hard. And do not refrigerate.

I wrote a bit about making sticky rice here:
Scroll down to the sticky rice section.

And to further kpzoo's post, you can also make deserts. Like this one:

Good luck!

Jan 08, 2008
cee in Home Cooking

Sriracha Chili Sauce Condiment or Crack?!

Has anyone ever seen Sriracha Panich brand in the US? It's made by Golden Mountain, but it's not the same as Golden Mountain's Sriracha sauce. Here's what it looks like:

I live in Thailand, and have tried every major brand (there's a lot of brands here) and this is my favorite so far. I sent a bottle of this to my brother for Christmas.

Jan 03, 2008
cee in General Topics


same noodles. they're called "sen yai" in thai.

Dec 29, 2007
cee in General Topics

Sizzling Rice Soup recipes [Moved from Greater Asia board]

Was it in a clay pot? Can you describe it a bit? I'm guessing it's a form of congee.

Dec 28, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Sticky Pad Sie Ew Noodles

Like others have said, you need to separate the noodles, one by one before you fry. Don't get fresh wide-noodles wet as that'll make them stick more - the oil helps them not stick. Use them the day you buy them, and do not refrigerate them.

Dec 28, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Magnolia Bakery Recipe

I've never tried making their cake recipes, but I've eaten their cakes at their cafe many times (used to live 3 blocks away) and they're very good. I make a cupcake based on their famous cupcake recipe which comes out great.

Dec 07, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Recipes, but not curry, that call for turmeric?

I just posted my gf's recipe for turmeric chicken. She made it for my family once and they loved it. They're still talking about it 3 years later. It's a popular way of cooking chicken in the beach towns south of Bangkok.

She puts her hand inside a plastic bag to rub the meat, then inverts the bag when she's done to throw it away. Good way not to stain your hands or anything else. You can use either whole turmeric root or turmeric powder.

Dec 06, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Help with making Pad Thai, please

The noodles are fine - soak them as others suggested and don't boil. Chantaburi is a province in Eastern Thailand which is known for it's yummy rice noodles. But any thin rice noodle will work. It's usually easiest to get those Pho noodles from Viet Nam.

All the street vendors here in Bangkok don't use spiced tofu. They use what's called yellow tofu:

It doesn't have any spices that I'm aware of. It's firm - so get the extra firm kind and drain it well. If it's not that firm, you can pre-fry it to get it hard enough.

Good luck!

Dec 05, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Soy Sauce

vorpal -
for the type of cooking you do, you should definitely try the thai brands. you might find you like the taste more too.

Nov 22, 2007
cee in General Topics

Soy Sauce

I think Nuoc Tuong is Vietnamese for 'soy sauce' .

There are tons of different types of soy sauce, from many different countries. Each one has it's use. I would say, as a rough guide, stick with a soy sauce brand which comes from the country which cuisine you're cooking. IE: Don't cook with Japanese soy sauce if you're making Chinese or Thai food.

From there you can learn about the different types of soy sauce, dark, sweet, salty, thin, etc.

Also, it goes rancid pretty quickly. Replace your bottle every 3 months or so if you don't use it often. If you swirl it around a bit in the bottle, and it leaves a sort of reddish-brown coloring on the glass, it's no good (it'll smell off too).

I live in Thailand, and cook Thai food, so I buy Thai brands. I use Healthy Boy brand often. (yellow label with a fat kid) I also like the brand with the boat, and the one with the dragonfly on the label.

For dark soy sauces, I use the steamboat brand. Sorry - I don't know the correct name in English, so I'm describing the logos. :)

I've got a picture of the logos here:

Nov 19, 2007
cee in General Topics

How do you keep the garlic from burning?

When the garlic is just becoming fragrant - and starting to turn non-shiny, add your meat or veggies. Don't wait until it's brown and crispy. As soon as you add the meat or veggies the pan will lower in temp. Keep stirring and it shouldn't burn.

Nov 13, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Pad Thai Noodles, Other good recipes?

There are three cooking styles you can use these noodles for:
1) stir fry (like pad thai, or with any sort of flavorings you want)
2) serve them 'dry' (soak first, then boil for 1 min until hot - cover with whatever)
3) in soup (soak first, boil separately, then add to broth)

I eat them 'dry' a lot - soak until soft, boil for a minute or so. Strain and add to a bowl. Quickly mix with pre-fried garlic and oil* (about 1 teaspoon), some soy sauce, sugar, chili flakes, and vinegar or lime juice. Add a hard-boiled egg, garnish with cilantro and spring onions and maybe even ground peanuts. Easy lunch to make for yourself.

*In some Asian groceries you can buy pre-fried garlic in a plastic container. I get this at the market, add a teaspoon of garlic to about another teaspoon of oil and nuke it for 30 seconds. The warming of the oil makes the garlic flavor come out, and it's a quick shortcut. Works for me. Make sure the add the oil to the noodles directly after you strain them otherwise they'll stick.

Nov 08, 2007
cee in Home Cooking

Recipes, but not curry, that call for turmeric?

Tumeric omelette. Take an egg, whisk it in a bowl with about 1/2 tea tumeric, a dash or two of fish sauce or soy sauce and fry it on really high heat with a good deal of oil in a wok. Flip and serve with rice. You can eat it with Thai Sri Racha sauce too. Yummy breakfast. :)

Nov 06, 2007
cee in Home Cooking