Ok so I do not profess to be a Bear Grylls kind of guy, but if I am among another culture of people I do find it very interesting to see what they eat and how they prepare it. So on this particular day after spending several hours in the morning photographing a temple inside an out. Doing HDR set ups and stumbling around in the heat with my camera and tripod, I headed over to my wife’s brother’s house to visit with his wife and have lunch. While there she prepared us the most wonderful and down to earth lunch. She cooked fresh fish, vegetables and also made a chicken foot soup and it was all prepared on her clay stove. I must say the food was different for me. But it was good; it was light and appeared to be very healthy eating. The dishes were not fancy and certainly not what one would see in a Thai restaurant in the USA. But this is what I love about traveling and living amongst the native population and not being in a hotel or tourist area. I want to see what the average everyday meal looks & tastes like. I want to see how one uses a clay stove, which by the way I think is amazing. So much so I bought one for my wife when she came to the USA. The purpose of a clay stove is to be able to cook using a minimal amount of wood or charcoal and that concept makes the clay stove a priceless tool when living in desolate places that have very little wood. Although Thailand is not desolate by any means the clay stove is still widely used because it is very cost effective and very functional tool for the job.
Later in the evening while back at my other brother-in-law’s house my wife’s nephew prepared fresh goose for dinner. Now I have to say while living in Virginia in my teenage years I had seen goose prepared and home cooked and it was horrible. Tough to eat and just not to great of a taste for me. So when I was told the men were going to kill a goose and cook it my mind started to drift back to 1980 Virginia and I started thinking of an alternative meal plan for my dinner, “maybe I’ll be able to eat enough bananas” and I was sure I might have some energy bars in my camera bag and maybe even a bag of those shrimp flavored potato chips I bought at the Lotus market the other day (that were not so great). Or could I just go to bed hungry? But I’m a fat guy, I like to eat… I know I can just fill up on rice & veggies. Then I came to my senses and said to myself, “self… just eat the goose, it can’t be that bad, can it.” And I have to say… the goose was good as a matter of fact it was very good. It was cut up into small pieces and used as an ingredient in a main dish. I do not know the name of the dish and I was so caught up in the eating of the food and family togetherness that I never took a single photograph of the final product. I can tell you it was superb.
Although some may find my photos a little (or a lot) disturbing I do not really care. I am merely sharing with the viewer/reader of my blog what I seen. And what I seen was two men preparing a wonderful meal in a way they do all the time. Some may not be able to get past the fact that they were not preparing the meat in a way we here in the USA would prepare it using modern cutting boards and a modern kitchen. But to me that does not even come to mind. I’m smart enough to know as long as the meat is fresh, cleaned and cooked to the proper temperature I’ll be ok. Again I’m not Bear Gylls but I’ll be ok. And I was.
I find that when I’m in Thailand and “up country” as I call it, away from Bangkok and into the farmland, the food is very good. My wife although not a health food crazed person, prepares and eats very healthy. It is just her way. She does fry some foods and of course they taste good, but most of her cooking is “whole food based” no boxed of prefab food.
To be continued…