During this seasonal transition period, the weather’s been unpredictable, with both random showers and heatwaves – what a bummer, really. An unpredictability that we do enjoy, however, is discovering how we can use everyday ingredients in innovative recipes. This time, we took the hero ingredients of NESTLÉ to the Land of Smiles (not literally though): Thailand!
Undertaking this challenge of creatively using off-the-shelf NESTLÉⓇ food products in Thai cuisine was Siam Sattayaphan, a professional chef who owns catering business Fat Legs' BBQ and a freelance chef on the BiteUnite platform. With a half-Aussie and half-Thai heritage, Chef Siam’s food inspiration stems from his mixed cultural background and dad’s cooking.
This particular dinner was no ordinary sit-down affair. Our guests worked hard for their food in an interactive cooking demo format, right from dish #1 where we got some volunteers to cut up hard tofu* into cubes to drop into a boiling pot of broth.
Nothing warmed up that rainy night better than a piping hot bowl of flavourful pork broth with glass noodles and tofu – the perfect way to kick-start the evening.
While everyone was busy finishing up their bowl of noodles, Chef Siam started to work on the tofu and cauliflower larb dish, where he combined the perfectly charred tofu* with beautiful grilled bits of cauliflower.
Complementing the existing charred and nutty flavours, this Thai salad popped with its refreshing, tangy yoghurt* dressing and fresh herbs, raw sliced shallot and coriander.
Busy Chef Siam was juggling between inside and outside, grilling some mean chicken skewers outside on the porch, whose aroma had our mouths watering. While he ran out to tend to the skewers, he left a task to two volunteers, who had to prepare the dressing for the grilled meat.
While this might seem like something simple on the surface, these girls had a difficult job ahead of them. They had to balance the fiery dressing by using the right amount of yoghurt* – too little might make the dressing too numbing on the taste buds and too much might mask the beautiful flavours of the nam chim (Thai dipping sauce).
Eventually, the foodies winged it with the right balance of yoghurt mix, with all the guests devouring the skewers in no time.
For the main course of green curry with homemade fish dumplings and fermented rice noodles, Chef Siam went the traditional route and pounded fresh green curry paste using a pestle and mortar. Instead of the usual coconut milk, yoghurt* was used for a creamy yet light base – a healthier alternative that didn't compromise on taste!
Rounding off the interactive dinner was a sinful dish of fried banana topped with scoops of luxurious ice cream* and a shot of Brazilian espresso* – talk about the ultimate blissful combination.
*Secret ingredients used by NESTLÉ:
PAK FOOKⓇ Hard Beancurd
PAK FOOKⓇ Beancurd for Frying
NESTLÉⓇ Greek Style Yoghurt
NESCAFÉⓇ DOLCE GUSTOⓇ