Green Papaya Salad
This popular salad is a staple in Northern Thailand, where it is called som tam, and in other parts of Thailand and in Laos, but its popularity has spread to this country, where diners can find it on many Thai restaurant menus. The traditional version uses fish sauce instead of soy sauce.
INGREDIENTS | SERVES 4
- ½ pound shredded green papaya
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 5 to 6 fresh green chiles, thinly sliced
- 1 large ripe tomato, sliced
- ½ cup roasted peanuts
- 1 to 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 to 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- Sugar to taste
Combine all the ingredients in a large mortar or mixing bowl and, using a pestle or sturdy wooden spoon, pound the ingredients together, tossing them to mix well.
What Is Green Papaya?
Generally considered a healthful fruit filled with several vitamins and containing the enzyme papain, the ripe orange papaya makes delicious eating on its own; its green, or unripened, counterparts are frequently used in Thai cooking. When shredded or cut up, the green papaya is used in curries or salads. Shredded green papaya is readily available in vegetable cases at Asian grocers, saving you the trouble of peeling and hand-grating the fruit.