Kindly be informed that the submission procedure for the Asian Food Fest ( Thailand ) has been changed. All entries need not to be sent to me via email, just link your entry to the linky tool provided at the bottom of this post.
Som Tum, as what the local Thais call it, is a salad made from shredded green papaya and is probably the most famous salad in Thailand. It was also voted as World's 50 best food by CNNGo in 2011. The main ingredient is of course obviously, unripe green papaya combined with other ingredients like tomatoes, beans and dried shrimps. The way of preparation is by pounding the ingredients lightly to release the flavours and the juices from the tomatoes by using the mortar and pestle. Well, i do own a mortar and a pestle and as you all know well, the mortar that we use here is of quite standard size, not big and is impossible to put in all the green papayas into it. Therefore, when the papaya was supposed to be added in, i transferred everything to a large bowl or basin and pound it lightly and mix them well in the bowl itself. If you do not own a mortar and a pestle, fret not!. There's a post here by SheSimmers that shows you can pound them in a ziplock bag, bash them with your rolling pin or something. Clever, eh?
I shredded my papaya using the shredder pic below. It makes the shredding job so much easier, i got them from a thai fair at my place many years ago when they were making mango salad and selling this shredderas well. I'm not sure if they are available at the local stores here but i think they should have cos it is quite a common tool.
A really delicious crunchy salad bursting with flavours; tangy, spicy, a little sweet and a little salty.
Recipe ( from thaitable.com ) with slight changes
1 clove garlic
2 chilli peppers/ bird's eye chilli
1 tbsp dried shrimps , soaked in warm water
6 green beans/french beans
5-8 cherry tomatoes, halved
2 cups shredded green papaya, more or less
2 tbsp lime juice, or to your liking
1.5 tbsp palm sugar, crushed
1.5tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp toasted peanuts
Using a mortar and pestle, pound garlic and chilli to a paste. Add in the dried shrimps and pound till they are slightly flatten or broken. Then put in the green beans and pound till they are slightly bruised. Add in the cherry tomatoes, pound a few times to get the juice out of the tomatoes and then half of the peanuts and pound till they are slightly broken into pieces.
Add in the lime juice, fish sauce and palm sugar and using the pestle, mix and further crushed the palm sugar into the mixture. Add in the shredded green papaya. ( at this point, i transfer everything to a big basin as my mortar is not able to accomodate the amount of the papaya ) Using a spoon or two forks, mix the papaya thoroughly with the sauce till they are well combined. Remove and sprinkle some toasted peanuts on the salad upon serving.
I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest ( Thailand )- Nov Month hosted by frozen wings
Also sharing this dish with Meatless Mondays organised by Chaya of Bizzy Bakes