As one of the first countries in the region to embrace foreign tourism, Thai Cuisine is one of the most popular and globally familiar of all Southeast Asian foods, represented by the plethora of Thai restaurants found throughout the world, even in small communities.

Nevertheless, it is often remarked in relation to all imports, notwithstanding the skill of the many expat chefs and renowned specialists that pervade the planet, that nothing ever quite matches the real experience of eating real Thai food in its country of origin.

Thai cuisine depends as much upon its aromatic qualities as much as its subtly spicy notes, and combines artful balances between sweet, sour, salty, bitter and spicy which create the basis of its unique qualities, a feature which has cross fertilised with the cuisines of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodian Khmer influences.

In the north, the Lanna cuisine shares elements of northern Laotian food and the Shan Cuisine of Myanmar, typified by the use of glutinous rice, while in the centre and south of Thailand, non-glutinous rice such as Jasmine Rice is the preference.

Among the many cherished ingredients, Lemongrass, Garlic, Shallots, Galangal, Cilantro, Thai Basil, Thai Lemon Basil, Thai Lime, Kaffir Lime, Pandanus Leaves, Cumin, Cloves, Star Anise, Prickly Ash Seeds, Fingerroot, Long Pepper, Turmeric, Shrimp Paste, Chilli Paste, Palm Sugar, Tamarind and fermented fish play among each other as the principal flavour bases which set the varied tones of Thai cooking when blended into their Meats, Fish, Seafood, Rice, Noodles, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans and fruits. As with Vietnam, Fish Sauce is often used as the primary means of adding saltiness.

To help you master the complex subtlety of creating authentic Thai recipes, there are numerous exalted schools in each of Thailand’s major tourist destinations to learn the arts of both the classic and regional dimensions to enjoying Thai food and faithfully replicating these distinct flavours when you return home.