is edible and delicious if prepared correctly. Remove the outer thicker bracts and only use the inner bracts (purple leaves). They need to be finely shaved and soaked in lemon water for at least an hour before use. Remove the developing tiny bananas, but retain the blossoming flowers springing out from the top of them. The pistal and tiny translucent bract of these flowers is to be discarded, and the remaining flower boiled. It's time consuming but worth the result in the salad.
widely used in Vietnam for chewing with betel nut, or for the use of wrapping foods. Has a subtle sour and bitter taste; betel leaves have immune boosting properties as well as anti-cancer properties.
also known as Cloudear Fungus and Woodear fungus. Very subtle flavour used basically for its texture in Chinese influenced dishes.
when young coconuts appear to have a darker green skin and are of this size, they are picked (usually by trained monkeys in Thailand) for their exquisite juice and flesh. If you haven't tried it, you haven't lived!
coriander roots are mainly used in Thai kitchens in the preparation of fresh spice paste.
although the small cumin seed looks rather unassuming, it packs a punch when it comes to flavor, which can be described as penetrating and peppery with slight citrus overtones. Cumin's unique flavor complexity has made it an integral spice in the cuisines of Mexico, India and the Middle East. Cumin is a good source of iron.
dill is a unique plant in that both its leaves and seeds are used as a seasoning. Dill's green leaves are wispy and fernlike and have a soft, sweet taste. Dried dill seeds are light brown in color and oval in shape, featuring one flat side and one convex ridged side. The seeds are similar in taste to caraway, featuring a flavor that is aromatic, sweet and citrusy, but also slightly bitter. Dill is a good source of calcium.
Viet Huong's 3 crab brand is what misschu uses- it is made of high quality anchovies of the first extraction and has a pleasant smell, unlike some others that have an overpowering pungency.
the flavor is similar to ginger, but more flowery and intense. A close relative of ginger, galangal is an important and popular ingredient in the foods of Indonesia and Southeast Asia, especially in Thailand.
also called vermicelli noodle. Glass noodle indicates its see-through quality; it is made of rice flour and water.
has an aromatic taste and texture completely different to ripened mangoes. They are best just on the onset of their ripening process.
a thick sauce valued for its unique combination of sweet and spicy flavors, hoisin sauce is made from soybean paste and flavored with garlic, sugar, chilies, salt, wheat flour and potato starch. It is used in sauces, to glaze roasted meat, and as a dipping sauce.
Kaffir lime leaf
the leaves and rind have a perfume unlike any other citrus and are indispensable in the wonderfully tangy soups, salads and curries of South East Asia.
it is made from the reduced sap of either the sugar palm or the palmyra palm. The trunk of the tree is tapped and drained of its sap for several months before the sap is boiled down to a syrup. The syrup is then dried into cakes, traditionally in empty coconut shells. Occasionally, the syrup is smoked first, giving the sugar a black color and distinctive flavor.
long thin fragrant leaves popularly used in desserts, soups and rice. It gives food that special fragrance that you'll never do without once you get to know it. When mulched, gives food a natural olive colouring.
also known as shiso or beefsteak plant. A pungent herb that comes in two colors red and green.
made of rice flour and water and naturally dried on bamboo baskets.
Roasted ground rice
jasmine rice slow roasted in cast iron pot and ground down gives off an aromatic fragrance akin to toast. Ever wondered why 'larb' dishes and Thai beef salad tastes so good? The secret is in the roasted ground rice.
is made from pulverised Cassava or Yukka root. The root vegetable is used like a potato. The root is first dried, then ground, and used as a natural thickener or to improve the silkiness and pliability of dough. It becomes translucent when cooked.
get their name from the dark lines that encircle the shell. Tiger prawn is distributed in the oceans from the western Pacific over most of the Indian Ocean and north of Australia towards Japan. Tiger prawns are among the finest in the world and have a clean, sweet taste.
a root of the ginger family sometimes called yellow ginger, it's what gives curry it's distinct yellow color and a major ingredient in Asian spice mix. In Chinese medicine, turmeric is known to stimulate circulation, resolve bruises and clots, strengthen the gall bladder, inhibit dangerous blood clotting, reduce liver toxins, act an anti-inflammatory, and help metabolise fats. It is also revered in India's Ayurveda as the most natural antibiotic, even surpassing Echinacea.
is actually an Italian word meaning long thin pasta in strings thinner than spaghetti. It is synonymously used however to mean thin rice noodle and is made of rice flour and water.
unlike normal mint, it has a strong, minty, peppery flavor and is sometimes referred to as hot mint.
has a nutty and peppery crunch that has more nutrients per gram than most vegetables or fruits. Apples, broccoli and tomatoes are often cited as the "wonder" fruit and vegetables, but gram for gram, watercress is a better source of vitamins C, B1, B6, K and E, iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese and zinc.
is more about crunch and texture than taste, is a good source of fiber and of vitamin B, calcium, iron, potassium, and zinc.
a premium product used to flavour foods, it is made of say bean oil, dried shrimp, dried scallop, red chili pepper, shallot, shrimp roe, oyster extractives and brandy.