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Simple Thai Food: Classic Recipes from the Thai Home Kitchen
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Simple Thai Food: Classic Recipes from the Thai Home Kitchen

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  178 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Thai takeout meets authentic, regional flavors in this collection of 100 recipes for easy, economical, and accessible Thai classics--from the rising star behind the blog She Simmers .

Who can say no to a delicious plate of Pad Thai with Shrimp; a fresh, tangy Green Papaya Salad; golden Fried Spring Rolls; or a rich, savory Pork Toast with Cucumber Relish? Thai food is not
Hardcover, 236 pages
Published May 13th 2014 by Ten Speed Press (first published January 1st 2014)
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Jul 01, 2014 Meghan rated it it was amazing
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review. No other consideration was offered, expected or received.

Shortly after I graduated from high school, I met a girl around my age named Mary. Her mother was from Thailand and she was such an amazing person. I learned so much from her – and got to taste some of the best food I have EVER had the pleasure of tasting. Ever since then, I have been a huge fan of Thai food, but nothing is ever as good as the authentic food
May 12, 2014 Jillyn rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, requested
Three and a half stars, rounded up.


Simple Thai Food is a collection of 100 recipes of, you guessed it, Thai cuisine from Leela Punyaratabandhu, the brains behind the popular blog She Simmers.

Though I am a foodie who was raised by a chef, I'm the first to admit that I don't know all too much about Thai cuisine. I picked this book up so that I could see what it's all about, and learn to make a few dishes in the process.

I have to say that the author does a great job explaining what ingredients
Janet Martin
Apr 29, 2014 Janet Martin rated it it was amazing
An absolutely wonderful cookbook! I tried a number of recipes and liked them all. Because I live hours away from a Thai--or any Asian--grocery, I had to limit myself to supermarket ingredients, and fortunately most of these recipes are compatible with what folks like me can actually find. I loved the Beef Green Curry with Thai Eggplants, even though I had to use regular eggplant instead of the little Thai variety and serrano chilies instead of Thai--these recipes forgive those sorts of ...more
Lisa Dickson
Jun 13, 2014 Lisa Dickson rated it liked it
Great background and inforation from a Bangkok native. Biggest positives: author's know-how, honesty, and section on homemade essentials (make your own coconut milk, siracha or fish sauce). Biggest surprise: her admission that pad thai calls for so many ingredients and steps that most Bangkokians purchase it from food vendors already-made. Maybe I'll try making her easy version of satay, or her recipe for coconut-chicken soup if I can get all the ingredients. Bottom line: I'm not ambitious or ...more
Jun 09, 2014 lisa rated it it was ok
I didn't find anything simple about these recipes; they all seemed dauntingly time-consuming. If I have time sometime, (and money for the special ingredients) I will try some of these, but the Simple Thai Food title is misleading.
Pattie Tierney
May 12, 2014 Pattie Tierney rated it liked it
Simple Thai Food by Leela Punyaratabandhu is an informative, engaging book, written by a woman who undoubtedly knows her craft, learned by way of the excellent recipes from her mother's collection. In the early 2000s, the author moved from her hometown of Bangkok to Chicago to further her education. Her mother, fearful she would lose the connection to her homeland and culture with the move, began sending her daughter cookbooks from her collection so that she could continue to enjoy the food of ...more
DelAnne Frazee
May 05, 2016 DelAnne Frazee rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Title: Simple Thai Food Classic Recipes from the Thai Home Kitchen
Author: Leela Punyaratabandhu
Photographer: Erin Konkel
Published: 5-13-2014
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
Pages: 236
Genre: Cooking, Food & Wine
Sub Genre: Cookbooks; International; Asian
ISBN: 978167745235
Reviewer: DelAnne
Reviewed For: NetGalley
My Rating: 5 Stars

Have a variety of food allergies that restrict my diet my parents tried to find different ways to serve dishes that were a little different. My b
May 08, 2014 Gaby rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbook, netgalley
Like many people that I know, I've always enjoyed Thai food. I grew up partly in New England and partly in Southeast Asia and Thai food has never seemed exotic to me. It has just the right mix of spice and freshness and something new.

I'm always looking for good Thai recipes and was excited at the chance to review Simple Thai Food. The author grew up in Bangkok but had developed her cooking skills while living in the US, trying to replicate her mother's recipes. As such, the book is geared toward
Amy Softa
Apr 14, 2015 Amy Softa rated it really liked it
I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review, originally posted on my blog,

Yes you are in the right place, and yes I am reviewing a cookbook. I am also very late in getting this review posted, the book got lost in the sea of papers on my coffee table… Anyway I am here now and ready to attempt my first cookbook review. Confession time. I have not made any of the recipes in this book, I am not a big cook and tend to stick to what I know or Turkish rec
Edythe Hamilton
Sep 09, 2014 Edythe Hamilton rated it really liked it
Leela Punyaratabandhu originally started as an online blogger in 2008 sharing Thai recipes with public from recipes collected by her mother who passed away weeks earlier. All recipes in this cookbook are foods the author grew up eating and proudly prepares for her family and friends to date.

Simple Thai Food is comprised of four sections with the first chapter having appetizers which is commonly known as “between meal snacks” for inhabitants of Thailand. The second chapter is Rice Accompaniments
Shannon Telles lisowski
Sep 12, 2016 Shannon Telles lisowski rated it really liked it
Shelves: cook-books
Simply put, an interesting cookbook. It didn't blow my socks off but I did find a few good recipes
Kari Lynn Mackey
May 07, 2014 Kari Lynn Mackey rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbook
This is a wonderful manual for recreating authentic Thai cuisine. The ingredients used in Punyaratabandhu's recipes are traditional and fresh, if sometimes hard to find in the United States. It might have been useful to include more possible substitutions, although she does give some advice on how to find the more exotic ingredients. Rather than use prepared sauces or spice blends, she breaks down the basics of how to make these staples from scratch. She explains not only the methods of cooking ...more
Dec 14, 2014 Annalee rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, cooking
Lovely photographs and engaging introductions to the recipes. Sounds like a blog post before each recipe (which is essentially how the book began). Relatable, funny, and very informative. I'd suggest it even if you only want to be a better orderer of Thai food at restaurants.

I want to own this one so I can take my time marking it up and deciding when/how I'll get the ingredients to try the homemade condiments/sauces (curry paste/chili sauce/coconut milk, etc). This is not what I would call "eas
Jan 03, 2015 Alyssa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, 2014
I went to Thailand when I was in sixth grade and fell in love with the food. I grew up with Chinese food being my comfort food because that's what was always on the menu at my Papa's house. When I discovered Thai food I felt like I was a grown up.

Sadly I have only mastered a few simple Thai dishes, but those are the ones I always pull out when I have company!

Leela's "simple Thai food" is a wonderful walk through mastering the basics of Thai food.

I loved reading the personal stories behind the r
Nov 04, 2014 Dm rated it really liked it
As a Thai food lover, I was excited to find this gem at my local library. Honestly some of the recipes I attempted would have been very difficult to undertake without having a local Asian food store near me. Regardless I thought the pictures divine and the recipes generally well written. Everything was consistent taste wise to dishes I've had all across America and in Japan (I know, who goes to Japan and eats Thai food? Obviously crazy people like me)... But not sure how the tastes compare to ...more
Regan W
Mar 14, 2015 Regan W rated it it was ok
Leela Punyaratabandhu's cookbook is beautifully shot and the recipes have easy to follow instructions. So why, you may ask, a two star rating. I have a real problem with a book titled SIMPLE THAI FOOD that requires the cook to mail order ingredients. That is not simple! Per the author, if you cannot find galangal and kaffir lime leaves in your local grocery store, you must mail order them because "there are no substitutes". You may use tom kha paste in a pinch (because that's so easy to find). ...more
Aug 08, 2014 Dana rated it liked it
I received this book free to review from Netgalley. I also checked out the hard copy from the library. The photos are beautiful, but there are not photographs of every recipe, which would have been nicer. If you are really interested in Thai cooking, this cookbook has a lot of information besides just the recipes including what parts of Thailand each dish is eaten in and how it is eaten and more. The recipes are far from simple though. They are quite complex and use ingredients that may be quite ...more
Zora O'Neill
Oct 26, 2014 Zora O'Neill rated it it was amazing
I own a gazillion Thai cookbooks. But this is the first one that kicked me into gear to cook normal, weeknight Thai-style food--not over-the-top restaurant food, or obscure-street-vendor-in-one-odd-corner-of-Thailand food.

That doesn't mean the recipes are dumbed-down or Americanized at all--it's just that the selection of recipes is a manageable size, and the simplest dishes are still intensely flavored. I really appreciate how she acknowledges a range of variations on certain dishes, and expla
Apr 18, 2014 Pamela rated it really liked it
Simple Thai Foods is written in a friendly, personal way. It's as though your Thai next door neighbor is sharing her favorite, everyday recipes with you.

Most of the recipes use ingredients that are readily available at the grocery store. If you have an Asian grocery nearby you can make all of the recipes in this book.

The recipes are clearly written and easy to understand. I think that any home cook would enjoy making the dishes in Simple Thai Foods.

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.
Mar 25, 2014 Teresa rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Delicious options for exploring Thai food. The recipes are accessible and the ingredients not so esoteric. With the exception of a few ingredients that are easy to buy in huge bottles, most of the ingredients are in more typical supermarkets. The headnotes are a bit long sometimes-Punyaratbandu talks about the dish, traditional and the American versions, as well as her life and often in the same headnote.
Crystal Beaman
Mar 22, 2015 Crystal Beaman rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking, thai
I absolutely love this book. There hasn't been anything I've made from it that I dislike, although I will admit to being too scared to try the fish custard. As much as I love the chicken with cashews recipe, my favorite part of the book is the section on basic preparations which includes making your own pastes and sauces. The homemade sweet chile sauce is so much better than what I have been buying at the store!
V B.
Aug 15, 2014 V B. rated it it was amazing
I love this amazing book. Thus I encourage you to go to to see inside the book for some wonderful mouth watering photographs! I got this book to test because this country has always been my favorite and I love the publishers series of other cookbooks. I have been a huge fan of traditional Thai food! An absolutely wonderful cookbook! I tried a number of recipes and liked them al
Jan 16, 2015 Pixie rated it liked it
3.5 stars. The recipes involve a bit too much work sourcing the ingredients and putting it all together - and lots of them use sugar, which I am trying to avoid - but I enjoyed reading it, and it inspired me to go to a Thai restaurant in town that has always gotten good reviews but that we had never tried :)
Heath Henwood
Jun 18, 2014 Heath Henwood rated it really liked it
Simple Thai Food:
Classic Recipes from the Thai Home Kitchen

This is an authentic Thai recipe book, containing over 100 recipes that are easy to cost, even for amateurs like me.

The book, like many modern cookbooks contains personal stories that tie cooking and people together.

A lovely book, with lots of lovely recipes.
May 27, 2014 Michelle rated it really liked it
Shelves: cooking
Nice, although doesn't always look so simple. Lovely photos. No nutrition info, not surprising given how many substitute options she has to give for those of us without Asian markets around the corner. Nice, though.
Apr 27, 2016 DAVID JAYCOX rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
No recipe for my favorite dish. Krakow, or chicken with basil and hot peppers. One of the most popular thai dishes in America.

Unless you really want to learn thai cooking from scratch, don't waist your money. This book only has esoteric recipes you've never heard of.
Great recipe book. Lots of great recipes that don't seem too difficult, but even better the author add some important information about resources and gave great explanations about the unfamiliar ingredients. I'll use this book a lot.
Dec 19, 2014 Marlee rated it really liked it
A newb in Thai cuisine but it all looks appetizing or interesting to discover. Thai food is a love at first taste and still learning it.
Was hoping for more vegetarian recipes. I'm new to making Thai food, so it's hard to look at meat recipes and know what I can successfully substitute, especially for ingredients like fish sauce.
Britomarte Van Horn
Mar 03, 2016 Britomarte Van Horn rated it it was amazing
Great intro Thai cookbook. I sat down and read it - charming anecdotes, beautiful pictures, helpful ideas. Will definitely cook from it.
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