Som Tam (ส้มตำ) or Papaya Salad (as it is often called in English) is a ubiquitous dish in Thailand. What was originally an Isaan (Northeast) speciality can now be found throughout the kingdom. It is actually made up of unripe papaya grated into long and thin slices, with tomatoes, long beans, chilli, lime, fish sauce or even crushed peanuts, etc added to give an assortment of flavours- sour, spicy, sweet. This particular version above is Som Tam Sai Puu, or Papaya Salad with Crabs. This dish will go down very well with khao niao (sticky rice)! 😉
Tips: Avoid biting into the chilli seeds if you can’t take spicy food very well. You wouldn’t want your mouth to be on fire and gasping for water, which happened to me so often in my early days of getting acquainted with Thai food. These little things can be vicious!