Virtual Playground

What does the world eat?

Sunday, March 13, 2011 | posted by Garrett | 0 Comments

Greetings from Thailand! I am Ryan Drysdale, the Global Playground Thailand Fellow. Along with the pictures we posted on the Virtual Playground of food from Thailand, I wanted to provide some more information for you to learn about food in Thailand.

In Thailand, as with most Asian countries, rice is the staple food. Nearly every single meal except some noodle dishes includes rice. In fact, in Northern Thailand, the word for "eat" is "gen cow" which literally translates into "have rice."

As the previous pictures show, many people in the mountains near Huay Pung Mai prepare food over a fire. However, with electricity becoming more common, more and more people are beginning to use electric woks or in some cases propane.

As my picture with a teacher shows, most people in Thailand eat sitting on the floor. Typically only at restaurants have I eaten sitting in a chair.

The Thai culture is very communal in the sense that they share almost everything, especially food. For meals, each person has his or her own plate of rice and a variety of other dishes will be laid on the floor. Everyone eats from those common dishes by taking a spoonful at a time and putting it on your rice.

While rice is the staple food, the common dishes range from noodles to vegetables and meats. The most common meats are pork, chicken, and fish. On special occasions, a water buffalo is sacrificed and eaten cooked or raw. There is a wide variety of vegetables some of which I do not know the names. And the supply of fresh fruit here beats any grocery store!

A list of some of the interesting things I have eaten in Thailand so far:
-raw water buffalo
-fried lizards
-fried octopus
-pumpkin (and not pumpkin pie!)
-fried whole fish
-the red top of a chicken's head

Are you afraid to eat any of these foods? In your culture, what are the foods that seem most important? Why?

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