After a long time trying to get the authentic Thai green papaya, today I finally have it in my hands and I can show you how to prepare one of the most famous salads in Thai cuisine, the “Som-Tam” or Salad of Green papaya. This papaya that we use is normal papaya but it is harvested when it has not ripened, therefore its flavor is not sweet, also in Thailand, we use a variety of papaya called “Malagoor Dam Neuen” (มะละกอ ดำเนิน), which has a much crunchier and richer texture than other papayas.
Green Papaya Salad (Som Tam) and Varieties:
It is an original dish from the northeast of Thailand, although it is very widespread and Som-Tam can be eaten in all parts of the country. There are many versions of this green papaya salad, the original and most commonly eaten in my country is the northeast or Isan, it is prepared in a somewhat different way, with an ingredient called Pla Raa or in I-san, Pla dark , which is a fermented fish sauce that gives it a very special flavor, this variety is strong for tourists, that is why a slightly different version called Som-Tam is usually prepared for them. Thai or shorter Tam Thai, also delicious and that we are going to prepare today.
This green papaya salad is characterized by the mixture of the crunchy texture and the fresh flavor of papaya with different nuances and flavors, combining salty, fish sauce, acid, lime and the sweet point of sugar from Palma also has chilis, which are added to taste, and can be more or less spicy as you like.
What is the Som Tam Accompanied With?
It is usually accompanied with glutinous rice or “Khao New”, also very typical of the northeast, it is sticky rice or with freshly cooked jasmine rice. It is also very tasty if it is accompanied with fried or roasted chicken, pork skewers, which I have also prepared, hard-boiled egg … In short, a very rich and recommended salad to prepare at home, I hope you like it.
- Papaya = Ma la kor
- Fish sauce = Nam-Pla
- Palm sugar = Nam -tan GDP
- Dried shrimp = Kung Hang
Ingredients For 4 People:
- 300 g. green papaya
- 1/2 carrot
- 8 cherry tomatoes (can be any type of tomato)
- 3 Chinese green beans
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 25 g. palm sugar
- 25 g. roasted peanuts
- 20 g. of dried shrimp
- 5 tablespoons fish sauce
- 4 tablespoons lime juice
- We peel the papaya, only the part that we are going to use, with a knife we chop all the part that we have peeled and cut to obtain the papaya strips, we also scratch the carrot.
- In a mortar, we put the chilis, garlic, and mash them.
- Add the shrimp and continue mashing.
- We chop the palm sugar, put it in the mortar, and mix everything together.
- Add the peanuts, half of the green beans, and mash it just a little more.
- Add half of the tomatoes, cutting them in two, also the fish sauce, the lime juice and mix everything very well.
- In a large bowl, we put the green papaya, the carrot, the rest of the green beans and tomatoes.
- Add the sauce from the mortar, stir everything very well and our salad is ready!