This recipe adds a refreshing twist to the famous Laotian papaya salad by replacing the green papaya with cucumbers. Although cucumber salad is more prominent during the hotter months of the year, it is still eaten the same way with sticky rice and grilled beef, The cucumber is also a great substitute when there isn't any green papaya around or you just don't want to deal with the papaya in general. Just like the papaya salad, you should use fermented fish sauce for authentic flavor.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Mix time: 5 minutes
3 red Thai chili peppers, destemmed (optional)
6 cherry tomatoes
2 tsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp monosodium glutamate (optional)
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp fermented fish sauce AKA padaek (optional, but recommended)
2 cups cucumber, shredded
1/2 cup carrots, shredded (optional)
Let's begin the adventure:
Shred the cucumber and the carrots and mix them into a bowl. Set aside.
Destem the Thai chili peppers, cut four of the cherry tomatoes into halves, and cut the lime into slices.
Put the chili peppers, the halved tomatoes, sugar, monosodium glutamate, fish sauce, and fermented fish sauce into a mortar. Squeeze the limes into the mortar and throw in the slices. Crush it all together using a pestle while stirring with a spoon.
Add the shredded papaya and carrots into the mortar and mix using the pestle and spoon. Don't use the pestle to crush anymore!
Slice the remaining cherry tomatoes into halves.
Pour the salad onto a large plate and garnish with the halved tomatoes.
Serve with rice and meat!
Voila! Experience Laos in the comfort of your kitchen. Spread the joy!
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