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The 5 Main Thai Flavors in Authentic Thai Cuisine

July 25, 2021
IN Thai Cuisine

With more than 5,000 Thai restaurants across the United States, it’s undeniable that Thai cuisine has become a national favorite. 

Pad Thai and green curry are two of the most well-known, popular Thai dishes, but what flavors make them so delicious? 

What Thai flavors make the dishes taste so unique compared to other cuisines? Want to know more about the flavors behind Thai dishes? Keep reading to find out!

The Key to Thai Flavors: Balance

If you want authentic Thai food, the secret is a balance of five flavor profiles. These are: salty, sweet, spicy, sour, and creamy. 

For the dish to taste authentic, all five flavors need to be in a perfect balance. Cooking Thai food isn’t easy, and if the flavors don’t complement one another, something will taste off. 

How is Saltiness Created? 

The first element of Thai cooking is salt. The salty taste comes from salt itself, soy sauce, or fish sauce. 

Salt is used in many curry pastes to preserve them, and fish sauce is prolific in Thai cooking. You’ll find fish sauce in soups like Tom Yum, curries, and stir fries. It is an essential ingredient in Thai cuisine. 

The Sweetness

The salty flavors are always balanced with sweetness, whether that’s a little coconut sugar, palm sugar, or a dark soy sauce with a bit of sweetness. Thai basil is also used to add a little sweetness to the best Thai food. 

Sour Ingredients 

Next up: the ingredients that give the sour element to Thai cooking. Ingredients such as lemongrass, tamarind, and kaffir lime create the sour component of Thai cuisine.

These ingredients also create the beautiful fragrance you often associate with Thai food.

Getting Spicy

No Thai dish would be complete without a bit of spice. Of course you can choose how much spice you want when you order at one of the Thai Ginger restaurants!

Thai chilis spice up the dishes most – they are either green or red. Garlic, ginger, and pepper are also used to give the signature kick to curries, salads, soups, and stir-fries. 

The Thai people have a saying that if it’s not spicy, it’s not tasty! What do you think about that?

The Creaminess

The final ingredient needed to create the perfect balance in Thai cuisine is creaminess. This balances out the strong spice and gives another aromatic element to the flavors. 

Coconut is the most commonly used ingredient to get the creamy texture you love so much in Thai food. Coconut milk and coconut cream add the decadent creamy texture to your favorite Thai soups and curries. 

Try Authentic Thai Food at Thai Ginger

If you are looking to try these authentic Thai flavors, then come and visit one of our Thai Ginger locations.

Whether you live in Seattle or are just visiting, we promise you’ll taste the best Seattle Thai food at our restaurants! 

We stay loyal to the principles of balancing Thai flavors and have been perfecting our Thai food menu for the last 25 years.

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