Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Thai Food” as Want to Read:
Thai Food
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Thai Food

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  1,281 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Thai Food gives the most comprehensive account of this ancient and exotic cuisine ever published in English. David Thompson shares his passion for the unique style of cooking that he believes to be one of the world's greatest cuisines.
Hardcover, 688 pages
Published October 3rd 2002 by Pavilion Books (first published August 27th 2002)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

The Cook's Companion by Stephanie AlexanderAustralian Womens Weekly Cookbook by Ellen SinclairMaggie's Harvest by Maggie BeerKids' Birthday Cakes by Susan TomnayThe Csiro Total Wellbeing Diet by Manny Noakes
Top Aussie Cookbooks
52 books — 24 voters
The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. RombauerMastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia ChildHow to Cook Everything by Mark BittmanBetter Homes and Gardens New Cook Book by Better Homes and GardensThe New Best Recipe by Cook's Illustrated Magazine
Best Cookbooks
1,176 books — 1,074 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,281 ratings  ·  29 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Sep 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking

This is the only cookbook I've ever bought that's plain scared me....find out why here:


An amazon goodreads is no place for Thai food. It has too much taste.

Oct 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking, own
5 stars, 5 stars, 5 stars!! I adore this book. It not only taught me to cook Thai properly, but it taught me how to do it with confidence. Recipes from this book and recipes inspired by this book are now a major part of our weekly meals.
May 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cooking
The *absolute* best thai recipe book I have ever come across. The photography is stunning, the writing is clear and then the recipes - oh, the recipes. They take a lot of work, but followed faithfully, they are absolutely stunning.

I've seen a few comments about not being able to find the ingredients. I can sympathise, but I think the point of this book was to faithfully encapsulate Thai food, not give substitutes. Fish sauce, palm sugar, kaffir lime leaves, birds eye chillies, coriander roots an
Jun 05, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: food
I never really felt the need to know how to cook thai food. it seemed like a lot of work and it was always so quick and easy an cheap to eat out wherever i was. That is of course until i moved to toronto where, in my three years, i've yet to eat a decent thai meal. I'm sure there is good stuff to be had somewhere, but i've yet to find anything beyond moderately palatable.

I don't remember where i found a listing about this book, but we got it from the library last summer in the attempts to satiat
Jan 18, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Serious foodies and appreciators of Asian cultures.
This book quite properly belongs in both the cookbook and food history categories. Anyone who knows me well knows how I dislike categorization, a preoccupation no doubt contributing to my difficulties with my grad committee. Catgories are limiting; this book perfectly illustrates the point. I have yet to make anything in this richly comprehensive tome, but have drunk many hot cups of tea while reading about Thai food history, which Thompson, an Aussie, has taken the trouble to master.

Not a book
Melenie Reiter
Nov 28, 2009 rated it really liked it
Job well done. A bible of sorts. I found recipes in here that I haven't even seen or smelled in YEARS. Now, I can totally show off to mom on her next visit!
Mar 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A superb and detailed introduction to Thai cuisine. How many cookbooks start with a 180+ page essay on geography, history, ethnology, cultural anthropology, agriculture and religion? And then each chapter which details a particular group of dishes (relishes, curries, soups, salads and side dishes) is in turn prefaced by a mini-essay on how the styles evolved and how different ingredients and techniques were incorporated. The recipes then follow a more or less historical sequence, from the origin ...more
Mar 27, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cooking
Pictures of Recipes? Very few.
Commentary on Recipes? Yes.
Nutrition Facts? No.
Recipe style? Truly authentic Thai.
Any keepers? A couple.

This functions as an encyclopedia of Thai culture and cuisine. The recipes can call for some pretty specialized ingredients.
Benjamin Chandler
This is a difficult book to rate, so I will refrain from giving it stars. For those of you who want to know immediately what I think about it, I'll say: I like it and it impresses me.

Saara and I both recently agreed that Thai food is our favorite cuisine. There's something rich in the deep combination of flavors the food imparts. The spicy, the sweet, the sour, the umami. I've missed Thai food a great deal while I've been over here in Slovakia—there just isn't a place to get it in my little town
Jul 29, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
I came the book at Cindy's and I fell for her review. I decided I must posses one so I immediately proceeded to Amazon to purchase my copy.

It is indeed a beautiful book. The hardcover is sheathed in deep pink fabric with a simple sash made from photograph of rice and simple writing of the title and the author. The whole look reminds me of a tasteful yet simple kimono. Quaintly, two ribbons are provided as bookmarks.

I initially had my reservation about this book despite the great review simply be
Nov 11, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: food
This is a beautiful cookbook featuring extremely authentic thai cooking. By authentic, I mean that every recipe starts, "First, forage in the jungle for wild ginger and galangal." I've learned a lot from the recipes, there are a couple I can now make fairly successfully, and some of the basic techniques and ingredient combinations have been useful. But I don't think I've made a single recipe where I had all the ingredients on the list, or followed more than half of the instructions. The learning ...more
Mar 03, 2010 rated it it was ok
To experience true Thai flavors you need to wander the streets and alleys of Bangkok or Chiang Mai and sample the street food or eat in one of the rambling wooden restaurants where the Thais go. You can also try Tempe thai food.

This is a large and rewarding book. We say rewarding because every sentence adds something to your understanding of Thai cuisine. Also, the photographs by leading Australian photographer Earl Carter illustrates the importance of the visual aspects of the cuisines being pr
Feb 23, 2007 rated it it was amazing

The purpose of this book was to record the history and practice of traditional thai cooking before it is eroded and modernized. The author moved to Thailand and researched for 14 years, reading old cookbooks, cooking with grandmothers and old palace cooks, speaking to farmers, and working in restaurants. The resulting 670 pages provide more complete a picture of a cuisine and food culture than anything you'll ever read. Thompson doesn't just tell you what fermented fish sauce is, it describes ho
Jan 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Right on. Lovingly compiled without the over-romanticization with which this cuisine is often smothered. Accessible to Westerners with no previous Thai food experience. Relatively "authentic," sure, but not overly obscure (I've chowed on some funky business in backwoods Thailand). Offers history pertaining to regional cuisines. Damn I love Thai food. Only thing I would change: more space given to my regional favorites, complete with awful poetry. That is, this book is solid. Lots of info. but st ...more
Feb 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is a cookbook for a lifetime. Thompson records the traditional recipes of both the Thai palace and Thai street food. Labour intensive at times (and thus probably why these recipes are in danger of being lost through modernisation) the recipes can be quite complicated, with long ingredients lists. However, there are many simple recipes to follow as well, and all are guaranteed to be authentic.
Jason Lewis
Aug 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is great. You'll have to go to an asian market for ingredients when you get down to cooking many of the recipes in this but when you do it is so worth the effort. Made the Pat Thai a couple of times now and it is one of the most flavorful dishes I have ever tasted. Green curry from scratch is amazing as well. Love, love, love this book
Tony R
Aug 02, 2007 rated it really liked it
An incredible comprehensive book of recipes and culture. I find it a tad bit unpractical as Thompson's recipes often call for items that I've never seen for sale ANYWHERE in the US. However, a seasoned cook can use his recipes as guidelines and make appropriate substitutions without sacrificing too much.

Worth it alone for the lessons on Thai history and cuisine and the splendid photography.
Mar 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cookery
I will never have to buy a book about Thai cooking ever again. This is such a huge volume with enough recipes to last a lifetime. I love Thai food and I will never be stuck for ideas for what to have for dinner. It's amazing!
Jun 19, 2011 rated it did not like it
This is a cookbook that I was literally aching to get. Guess what, never cooked anything out of it. No pics, obscure ingredients, too fiddly to make. I'm sure it's all very authentic but simply not very user friendly.
May 13, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookery
Interesting, but uses ingedients that I would use once or twice then move to the back of the cupboard. LOVE Thai food, but will keep searching for recipes that use items, esp veg, that aren't so exotic.
Riley Edwards
Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If you only own one Thai cookbook, make it this one. It's encyclopaedic in its detail - a masterwork. The recipes range from very simple to advanced, so if you're a fan of Thai and have access to the right ingredients you're bound to find dozens of delicious things to cook. Highly recommended.
Jul 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Best book on Thai food that I've ever come across. Could benefit from more photos!
Aug 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
an essential book for anyone who wants to understand the food of Thailand
Viv Freeman
Feb 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
BUT..... too scared to cook anything as the are a billion ingredients for each recipe.
Dec 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Best. Thai. Cookbook. EVER. nuff' said
Andrew Pask
Apr 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kitchen
Thanks Chef David for this awesome book which has helped me bring Thai food alive here in my kitchen. Not for the faint of heart.
Julian Watt
May 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The Thai Food Bible.
Nothing bad comes out of it.
Mar 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Probably the best Thai cookbook ever 100% authentic
rated it liked it
Jul 26, 2013
Rebecca Giacomelli
rated it it was amazing
Jul 04, 2012
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Land of Plenty: A Treasury of Authentic Sichuan Cooking
  • Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art
  • Into the Vietnamese Kitchen: Treasured Foodways, Modern Flavors
  • Washoku: Recipes from the Japanese Home Kitchen
  • Madhur Jaffrey Indian Cooking
  • Mangoes  Curry Leaves: Culinary Travels Through the Great Subcontinent
  • The Cook's Companion
  • Cradle of Flavor: Home Cooking from the Spice Islands of Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia
  • Classic Indian Cooking
  • Mastering the Art of Chinese Cooking
  • The Book of Jewish Food: An Odyssey from Samarkand to New York
  • The Breath of a Wok
  • The Complete Robuchon
  • Secrets of the Red Lantern: Stories and Recipes from the Heart
  • French Provincial Cooking
  • Noma: Time and Place in Nordic Cuisine
  • Moro: The Cookbook
  • The Country Cooking of Ireland
See similar books…
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »