Factor influencing Thai cuisine PD184 Thai cuisine
The principle underlying the structure of Thai cuisine 1.0 Buddhism 2.0 Monarchy 3.0 Geography 4.0 Faith and beliefs 5.0 Social Values
1.0 Buddhism • Taking lives is the most serious sin of all. • Bad Karma • The bigger animal the greater sin. • ‘Present’ Thomson suggests that belief in present is the fundamental motivation behind the skilled Thai craftsmanship; especially in cuisine
1.0 Buddhism • Religion : Buddhism Making merit to monks: daily obligation Food must be the best, the first and cooked with the best intention. Monks are the intermediaries in sending food to their ancestor ( Sukpisit, 2000)
10 things that can not give to monks • Human flesh • Dog meat • Elephant meat • Horse meat • Snake meat • Lion & Beameat • Tiger: leopard, Sumartra, yellow tiger • Plus no raw meat, fish, No blood, No alcohol
Paradox of Buddhism • One of the principles of Buddhism teaching is ‘Not to desire’ However to give merit or to cook at religious ceremony is based on the best ingredients, the most flavour food and the most beautiful looking dish.
2.0Monarchy • Dominate the governing style of the country • Khmer and Indian influence; status • Court cuisine must match the status of the ruler. • Taste as well as sight is valued; Craving • Lady of the court tries to impress the kings; plenty of time in their hands. • Court cuisine underlies the complexity of Thai cuisine.
Monarchy • Court is the hub of exchanges; food stuffs and cooking techniques. • Learn from foreign chef hired by the king • Accompany the kings to other places and incorporate different ingredients
3.0 Geographical location • Trading route in Asia • Foreign plant, spices, foodways came into Siam with trader • Turn whatever came in to suit Siamese likeness • Indian & Chinese
Geographical area • Weather pattern of regional area • Availability of natural resources • Interior geographical characteristic Vs Coast line in the southern part of Thailand
Geographical area • Tropical zone • Heat spoil food • Fermented came in handy • The use of spices • Dried and fermented food stuffs
4.0 Faith and belives • Spirits inhabits everywhere • God inhabits in foodstuffs teaches Thai not to waste. • Do you what kind of food stuffs has faith and beliefs attached to them?
Faith and belief • Rice godness Phra mea pho sok • Water godness Pra mea kong ka • Banana tree spirit Phi tanee • The habit of not wasting food but creating new dishes from left over is another foundation of Thai cuisine. Ie. Khao tuu, Nahm phrik long rue
5.0 Social values • High value placed on forienger ( King Rama V, VI) • The fear of colonialism • Less impact on the cuisine but more on consuming habits
Social values • Also, reflecting in wine dinning behaviour • Expensive produces ie, oyster, foie gras etc. • Check out Sunday brunch
The development of Thai cuisine • The attempt to modernize Thailand (Rama V,VI) • The end of absolute monarchy • Governmental policies • The declination of power of Buddhism • Technology, economy & social changes
The attempt of Modernization of Thailand • In Rama V and VI • The fear from colonised, Siam force to adopted western idea of civilisation • Cutlery • Court lady learnt how to cooked western food ( to suit Siamese palate) • Western ingredients like butter, ham, milk is widely adopted in cooking
The end of absolute mornachy • Rama the VI abandon the practice of polygamy. Number of royal family member decline • The abdicate of Rama VII • Disperse of court cuisine • Simplified to suit peasant lifestyle • Government gain more power in affecting Thai foodways.
Political and Governmental moment • 1932 Prime minister General Pibul attempted to form a national identity. Telling people how they should eat, act, dress and live • After the world war II, there was a rice shortage, the government all encourage thai to eat noodle and Pad Thai
Governmental moment • Prime Minister Taksin market Thai cuisine as national product. • Thai cuisine, cuisine of the world • Training and sending chef aboard
Governmental moment • Standardisation of recipes • Use commercial industrialized products from Thailand
Declination of Buddhism power • Especially with Urban thai • Live cycle used to circulate around the temple • Religious ceremony every fortnight • The central of life shifted • Taking advantages of the faith
Buddhism declination • Eating large animal is become more acceptable • Live animal is kept in the tank ready to cooked and served in Chinese restaurants • Making merit is not as strict • Food normally purchased due to time limitation
Technology, Economy and Social changes • Urbanization is structural changes from low density to high density residence • Primary producers became consumers • Move away from indigenous plants & food to purchasing mass produced food by others.
Social changes • Time scare & double earning push family to depend on market ready-to-eat food. • The passing on the knowledge from generation to the next • Gender status is changed
Technology • Canned coconut cream • Pre-package curry paste • Kitchen equipment and utensils • Chilling technology • Microwave invention • Food innovation • Fresh food to process one • Festive food available everyday
Salih K. et al,. • States that ‘ Industrial palate refers to the growing share of value-added, often mass-produced, processed food products in the diet of average conusmer.
In conlcusion,.... • In my opinion, The being of Thai cuisine is reflected through Thai flag.
Where is that come from? • Influences analyzed Utilizing Rozin’s Structure of cuisine • Basic Food stuffs • Seasonings and Flavouring Particles • Cooking Methods and techniques
Basic Food stuffs • Rice • Rice is the main staple of Thai cuisine. Although consuming rice does not emerge from the influence of other cuisines, the other products made from rice such as noodles and/or fermented rice noodles do so. • Thais rarely process rice grains to make other things except its flour for sweet desserts.
Rice the staple • However, Thais consume processed rice in great amounts today. • Noodles for example, are a basic staple • that is processed from rice • The noodles discussed here are fermented rice noodles as opposed to the noodles introduced by the Chinese.
Fermented rice noodles are consumed throughout Thailand and are believed to have originated in either Myanmar or Cambodia. There is no actual evidence to prove its origin; however, Hongwiwat assumed that it originated in the Mon (Myanmar) and spread to other places in south east Asia.
The names given to this fermented rice noodles by south east Asians are interestingly similar • In Myanmar, they called it Ka-noan Jin; in Cambodia, Kao nom; and in Thailand Khanomchin. • It is closely linked with religious and festive food since it requires many people to prepare, Fermented rice noodles are consumed in every region but with different varieties of curry or spicy soups. (Tawithong Hongwiwat,)
Aquatic Food Sources • The old Thai cookbook Mae Krau Hua Pa, mentions about forty different fresh water fish that were consumed consistently in the Thai diet • agricultural industry damaged the bio-diversity of fresh water fish and vegetables in Thailand, especially in Bangkok.
One example illustrating this case is Kaeng Tepho (curry with oily fish and morning glory), whose main ingredient is Tepho, a very oily fresh water fish. Even though Tepho has started to disappear from the dish altogether and has been replaced by pork belly, Thais still call it Kaeng Tepho. What’s interesting here is that the substitute for oily fish was not another type of fish but pork which was a food introduced by the Chinese.
Plants, Vegetables and Fruits. • Blanched vegetables are the staple condiment to accompany chilli relishes. • Thais used to picked these vegetables from paddy fields and when these paddy fields disappeared in Bangkok, the major source of food supply fell onto the agricultural industry • .Today local and native vegetables are fading away from Thai dishes in Bangkok.
Local green • Wildly grown vegetables have changed to more accessible vegetables such as baby corn, cucumber and snow peas. What is most curious is the carrot. How did the carrot make its way into Thai food? (Yasmeen, 344.)
Seasonings • Lemongrass, kaffir lime, and wild turmeric seem indigenous to Thailand. Onion, spring onion, and shallot are not only used as seasoning but also as vegetables
Spices • Spices such as cumin, cloves, cardamom, nutmeg, and cinnamon are used limitedly in Matsaman curry paste. • Only cumin is the ingredient used in other curry pastes. Cumin is added to give a subtle aroma and flavour to the dish; in fact most of the time it is undetectable.
Coriander • Coriander has an important role in Thai cuisine. Although coriander leaves are mostly used as a garnish on finished products, coriander underlies Thai cuisine. Coriander roots, which provide a unique aroma and flavour, are essential to many curry pastes and dips.
Chilli • Chilli is a prime evidence of the fusion of Thai cuisine. Before the introduction of the chilli, Thais depended on the peppercorn as a source of spice in their cuisine. • Chilli raised the level of heat and temperature in Thai cuisine and now it is what Thai cuisine is renowned for. Every region uses chilli according to their local tastes. Chilli indeed, creates another flavourful dimension in Thai cuisine.
Professor Ake-kaphol creates a chart on the structure of Thai cuisine • Salt + chili • Basic Dipping • Basic Dipping + herb • Chili relish • Chili relish + meat+ vegetable • Salad; yum, pla, Labb • Salad + water, coconut oil. • Curry
Coconut • Coconut milk is one of the main ingredients found in Thai dishes including desserts. Sombat Plainoi mentions that grated coconut meat represents a major characteristic of Thai desserts.