I respect the Thai cuisine as much as I do to Szechuan food because of their mastery of the arts of flavours. Chefs of both cuisines delight in combining a variety of tastes to create dazzling complex flavours. Love the simple Thai salad dressing of sour-sweet-salty-spicy flavors made with lime juice, sugar, salt and chilies. The dressing can be used with boiled or grilled seafood, including fish fillet, mussels, squid, octopus. Feel free to add crispy vegetables such as yard-long beans, shallots of green mango to counter balance the soft and chewy seafood.
- 300g squid, scalded in a crisscross pattern and cut into slices
- 150g shrimps, shelled and deveined, discarded heads but keep tails intact
- 3 yard-long beans (optional), cut into slices in 5cm 豇豆
- 1 lemongrass (green part only), thinly sliced香茅
- 2 small shallots, thinly sliced小红葱
- 2 spring onions, cut into slices in 5cm
- 1 sprig fresh coriander (separate the stalks and leaves)香菜(for garnish), roughly chopped香菜
Sour-sweet-salty-spicy Dressing (makes 1 cup)
- ½ teaspoon sea salt海盐
- ¼ cup fish sauce鱼露
- 4-5 tablespoons caster sugar白砂糖
- ½ cup lime juice青柠汁
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 red Thai bird chilies, minced
- To prepare the dressing, in a small saucepan, combine the sea salt, fish sauce, and sugar and heat over until the sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a small mixing bowl to cool, then stir in the lime juice, minced garlic and chilies.
- Blanch the squid and shrimp, one at a time in a pot of boiling water over high heat till just done. Drain. Transfer to a mixing bowl, add in yard-long beans, lemon grass, shallots, spring onions and coriander stalks. Toss well. Pour into 1/2 cup of the spicy dressing. Mix well. Spoon onto a serving plate and garnish with sprig of coriander leaves.
- Reay to serve.
- Squid must be cooked either a very short time or a very long time. Anything in between turns it into rubber. Two minutes over high heat is plenty. Beyond that will require at least 30 minutes to an hour to re-tenderize it.