Eat Drink and Blog

… a foodie's journal

Spicy Noodle Tom Yum

I shared this extremely spicy noodle tom yum with a friend last week.  I said “extremely” because it was so spicy your tongue could burn with this tongue.  I never expect that I would fall in love with such a spicy dish.  Yes, “tom yum” is a part of my favorite Thai foods!

Here’s something about “Tom Yum” from the Wikipedia:

Tom yum or tom yam (Lao: ຕົ້ມຍຳ [tôm ɲam]; Thai: ต้มยำ, [tôm jam]) is a spicy clear soup typical in Laos and Thailand. Tom yum is widely served in neighbouring countries such as Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia, and has been popularised around the world.

Literally, the words “tom yum” are derived from two Tai words: “tom” and “yam”. “Tom” refers to boiling process (soup, in this case). “Yam” refers to a kind of Lao and Thai spicy and sour salad. Thus, “tom yum” is a Lao and Thai hot and sour soup. Indeed, tom yum is characterised by its distinct hot and sour flavours, with fragrant herbs generously used in the broth. The basic broth is made of stock and fresh ingredients such as lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, lime juice, fish sauce and crushedchili peppers.

In neighbouring countries like Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, the name tom yumis used widely for various spicy soups which can differ greatly from true Lao and Thai tom yum soup. As a result, people are often confused by the disparities.

Commercial tom yum paste is made by crushing all the herb ingredients and stir fryingin oil. Seasoning and other preservative ingredients are then added. The paste is bottled or packaged, and sold around the world. Tom yum flavoured with the paste may have different characteristics from that made with fresh herb ingredients.


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Sad News

Last Wednesday our workmate received a very sad news from the Philippines:  her mom passed away. I have to admit that I didn’t exactly know what to do when I heard her crying.  Exactly how do you comfort someone who is grieving so much?

I did not actually see her until later that day, and she was a lot sober but still in tears. I just hugged her.  Letting someone know you feel for her doesn’t have to be expressed in words, I believe.

Since she has siblings also working here in Bangkok, they planned about going home, getting tickets, getting re-entry visas, getting a leave from work, so the last couple of days have been very busy for them.

It’s good that years before their mom’s passing, they were able to avail of a funeral planning guide so it was easier for the family back home to process things.

In the Philippines, most families who would lose a loved one would have to prepare food during the burial, or even during the wake. So what neighbors and closest friends would do is to accept cash gifts from visitors to cope with the expenses. I don’t think it’s proper that the bereaved family would have to be burdened with the food costs at this time.

Some wealthy families serve a full meal after the burial while most people would just distribute bread and some juice. I don’t know what my friend’s family is going to serve, but I pray that their financial needs would be met, and most importantly, that they would find peace and solace in this time of bereavement.

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Budding Artists

Our daughter Ria loves to sing.  She sings in the shower, while washing dishes, while making crafts, even  before she closes her eyes to sleep at night.  The thing is, she has become so shy when she turned 8.  She became so conscious about her looks, how she sounds, and how her teeth look so big ( personally I think it’s the cutest thing!).  Call it growing pains.

I am just happy that she has friends now that shares her passion and talent in music.

Ria (in green) singing with friend Naomi.

They sounded so good I was toying with the idea of making a recording for them. It’s just a wild thought, really because we don’t have tube-tech mec 1a or any of those things needed for a good recording. Well, we just keep telling these girls to sing more– upload them online and who knows? A door of opportunity might just open for them. :)


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