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The Food of Southern Thailand

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by Austin Bush
Regular price $45.00

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For a limited time we have copies signed by Austin Bush.

If you just want to cook Thai food, you should know that Austin Bush is going to urge more upon you. A fluent speaker of Thai, a former longtime resident of Bangkok, and a professional photographer, he assumes your interest also includes understanding what makes Thai food distinctive, how it got that way, and how complexly different it is from place to place.

His tour of southern Thailand, which here means that part of the country stretching about 500 miles down the Malay peninsula, further divides the region into four areas: the towns and cities; the islands; the countryside; and the coast. 

Highlighting ingredients which are integral to the cooking of each of these places, Bush characterizes the cuisine for those who have not grown up locally. The curries of Nakhon Si Thammarat, for example, “include lots of chile and, at times, can be downright spicy. But that heat is almost always countered by a strategic dash of sugar, a splash of rich coconut milk, or a generous dollop of savory shrimp paste.”

Bush’s recipes are detailed and he takes it as given that you will go to the trouble to obtain ingredients such as makrut lime and fresh galangal, as well as make your own coconut milk (instructions provided). His photographs of the prepared food, the markets and restaurants, and the people in them, are all an inducement to stretch yourself for some welcome rewards.

The kind of cultural immersion we like to see.

Hardcover. Color photographs throughout.

Published: November 7, 2023

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