Tum Polamai ( Spicy Thai fruit salad Isan style)

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Tum Polamai ( Spicy Thai fruit salad Isan style)


Today I still would like to continue to give you another recipe for an adapted version of a Thai Som Tum salad (Green papaya salad) which you could do it in your own home and the ingredients are easily available all over the world. But you will need to buy yourself a large wooden or clay pestle and mortar! Som in the North East of Thailand (Isan) means sour and Tum means to beat or mix and grind in the pestle and mortar. Isan Som Tum is usually made with green julienne papaya, long beans, and cherry tomatoes. While the dressing still has the same concept in flavor combinations as most Thai salad dressings, sweet, sour and salty. What makes this dish so popular and remarkable tasty is the fact that the julienne green papaya is pounded and mixed in the pestle and mortar. By bruising the julienne papaya the sap comes out to mix with the dressing and at the same time the dressing is allowed to seeps into the pieces of the papaya. This way of mixing the salad gives the dish a special flavor and scent.


Tum Polamai (Spicy Thai fruit salad Isan style)
Salad Ingredients:
Green mango, peeled and julienne as needed
Apple, sliced into segments as needed
Pear, sliced into segments as needed
Grapes, cut in half and seeded as needed
Cherry tomatoes, cut in half 6-8 each
Long beans, cut into 2-inch length 1/4 cup
Deep-fried dry shrimps 1/4 cup
Fried peanut 1/4 cup

Salad Dressing ingredients:
Garlic, unpeeled 2 cloves
Fresh Thai chili peppers, Prik Kee Nu 4-6 each
Fish sauce 2 Tbsp.
Palm or coconut sugar 1 Tbsp.
Lime juices 2-4 Tbsp.
Directions:

1. First you must make the dressing in the pestle and mortar by grinding the garlic and chili peppers. Then you add the palm sugar, fish sauce and some of the limejuice and mix well.

2. Add the long beans and pound to bruise them a little followed by the cherry tomatoes and the julienne green mango. Mix all these ingredients in the pestle and mortar with an aid of a large spoon in one hand and wooden pestle in the other.

3. At this time slice the various fruits you have selected to the pestle and mortar and mix well using spoon and the pestle. Bruise the fruits a little so that some of the liquid in the fruit will add to the flavor and scent of the dressing.

4. Taste the finished dish for the right amount of saltiness, sweetness and sourness. If not salty enough, add fish sauce. If not sour enough add limejuice. I think you would not need to add more sweetness because some of the fruits used are already sweet.

5. Plate the salad and sprinkle on top with fried peanuts and fried dry shrimps and serve immediately.


Note: The fruits used in this recipes are not written in stone, just remember to choose the fruits that have different texture, crunchiness and softness. Also you will need to bare in mind the sourness and sweetness of the fruits as well. Granny Smith apples can be substituted for the green mango. But the long beans and cherry tomatoes are a must.

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