Som Tam

Green Papaya salad
Serves 4

You are not often told in a recipe to purchase an unripe ingredient, but the success of this salad depends upon a green papaya that is totally hard to the touch. Anything riper and the fruit will be too soft to grate. Thais actually peel the papaya whole. It is then cut vertically 5mm thick and horizontally into scant 5mm thick threads.
1 medium green papaya

14 dried shrimp

1 tablespoon tamarind pulp soaked in 3 tablespoons warm water

2 garlic cloves, minced

4 small fresh green chili peppers, chopped

¼ pound long beans, cut in 1 inch pieces

3 plum tomatoes, cut in thin wedges

2 tablespoons nam pla (fish sauce)

½ teaspoon sugar

½ cup shelled roasted unsalted peanuts, crushed
Peel the papaya and rinse under cold water. Halve, remove seeds, and shred flesh using a grater or a knife. In a food grinder, process dried shrimp and set aside. Strain tamarind pulp, reserving juice.

With a mortar and pestle, pound garlic and chilis to release flavour. Add papaya, green beans, and tomatoes and continue pounding gently, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add shrimp, tamarind juice, nam pla, and sugar - stir until well combined, then lightly pound for 1 to 2 minutes more.

Divide among plates and garnish with roasted peanuts. Accompanied with sticky rice, grilled chicken or Thai barbequed pork.
Conversion chart
1/5 teaspoon = 1 milliliter
1 teaspoon = 5 ml
1 tablespoon = 15 ml
1/5 cup = 50 ml
1 cup = 240 ml
2 cups (1 pint) = 470 ml
4 cups (1 quart) = .95 liter
4 quarts (1 gal.) = 3.8 liters
Grilled chicken
Thai barbequed pork
Sticky rice
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