It's Songkran Festival, "Khoa Chae" - The Royal Summer Rice Dish, Is The Must Try Menu

When I saw this S&P commercial content, it reminded me of a childhood memory, where my mom and aunties prepared this very dish together during Songkran period, the hottest time of the year. It's Thai summer dish called Khao Chae , which was originally adapted from Mon recipe to be served in Royal Thai Palace during King Rama II (r. 1809 -1824).It was meant to be made and consumed in the hot season, from mid-March to the end of April. As the Royal Thai version was filled with several condiments and side dishes, it was adapted again to commoners with lesser side dishes. I had seen mom made her own recipe with five condiments and side dishes. The process took hours, comprised of "rice soaked in cool water", ( which has straight-forward meaning; "Khao" means "rice" and "chae" means "to soak"). The side dishes I observed them delicately cooked were similar to what appeared in the commercials;

  1. stuffed sweet chilies with ground pork wrapped by drizzled net of fried eggs.

  2. stir-fried sweet pickle radish.

  3. Deep fried kapi (shrimp paste) ball rolled in fresh coconut

  4. Fresh veggies ( cucumber and spring onion., etc.)

  5. Some small sliced of sour, green mango

Directed by our young female director, May Apizsara. She created the great visual of each side dish perfectly. Nothing is intensely flavorful as most of Thai dishes. However, with the scent of Jasmine flowers floating in Thai jasmine rice soup, the rice smelled so pleasantly and gave the cooling sensation from the ice soaked at the same time.

The full set of Khao Chae is surely not only made for a cooling summer treat, but also can satisfy someone's nostalgic mind :)