If you’ve travelled in Thailand you may have tried this classic papaya salad. It’s so easy to make. Take a green papaya, peel it and shave or julienne into shards. Pound the papaya with dried shrimp, peanuts and chilli to blend all those flavours together with lime juice and fish sauce to taste.
200g (7 oz) shredded green papaya*
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 snake beans, cut into 3cm-long batons (alternatively use green beans)
¼ cup dried shrimp, soaked in water for 5 minutes to soften
2 tbsp roasted peanuts
½ long red chilli, roughly chopped
1 small birds’ eye chillies (use more or less to taste)
1½ tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp white sugar
6 cherry tomatoes, halved
In a large som tum mortar, place garlic, green beans, dried shrimp, peanuts and chillies. Use a wooden pestle to bruise ingredients. Add the shredded papaya, fish sauce, lime juice and sugar. Use a spoon and the pestle to mix and bruise the salad. Then add tomatoes and bruise again. Season to taste with more fish sauce or lime juice if needed.
Alternatively, the salad can be made by placing ingredients in a large ziplock bag and using a rolling pin to bruise the ingredients.
– Green papaya is unripe papaya. It can be found at Asian grocery stores.