I don't eat in Thai restaurants in England anymore, the last one I did eat in was David Thompsons Nahm before it closed so he could focus on the Bangkok branch and it was excellent. I have lived in Thailand and cook my own Thai favourites 3 or 4 nights a week and know its closer to real-deal food than I could get at a take away here in London.
Nam prik ong - a nam prik is a relish or dip, we don't really have a word for what it is in English. This is one with tomatoes and ground pork and is served with par boiled or raw veg.
Kaeng Som - sour curry, normally Kaeng Som Pla, sour curry with fish, might appear on an menu as an "orange curry" and is one of the non-coconut milk based curries.
Sen Lek Moo Look Chin Nam - a noodle and pork meat ball soup, similar to Pho but quicker to make!
Kaeng Hang-Lay - this is a Thai version of a Burmese curry, its quite dry but seriously tasty, with pork and star anise and peanuts, no coconut milk again - have a look at thehonestwok.com for a really good recipe.
Tom kem pla sy keun chai - this is a salty, sweet fish dish that just cries out for a load of rice to mop up the sauce with, with garlic and coriander root and palm sugar this is a truly representative taste of Thailand.
Kaeng Panaeng neua - Panang curry with beef, rich and salty, coconut'tee and hot - finshed with the fresh anise taste of Thai basil (Bai horapha) this is a firm favourite of my other half as well as myself....
Moo krob - crispy pork, often deep fried pork belly, served with nam pla prik, chilies in fish sauce, this is perfect snack food for when you're having a few drinks....
Oh and Khannom jeen! These are slightly fermented thin rice noodles, they are impossible to get outside of Thailand fresh but similar dried noodles are available, and the dish of Khannom jeen nam ya pla - a refreshing fish and green bean dish with a grachai (lesser ginger/key ginger) based sauce and a poached egg is the perfect mid morning snack!
Edited by gladstone (04/17/13 08:02 AM)