One of my favorite starters when I go out for Thai food is the Green Papaya Salad. I love the salty tangy flavor, and light enough to not ruin my appetite for the rest of the meal. It’s also perfect to have with a bowl of Tom Yum Gai soup for a quick Thai lunch. While I’ve made the soup at home, I’ve never thought of making the salad because I thought it would be a lot of work, not to mention ever finding a green papaya.
Last weekend while browsing the produce at our local Asian Market, I spied a green papaya! Now I had to try to make that salad.
Not knowing quite what to expect when cutting this open, we expected there to be some seeds. Take a look at the “seeds.” Aren’t they cute?
They kind of look like white capers.
The next order of business was to find a recipe. A quick google search later, I had 4 somewhat similar recipes, and kind of melded them all together.
This is what I came up with:
3 Tbsp. Fish sauce
2 limes, juiced
1 big Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp garlic chili sauce
about 4 cups of shredded papaya (we used a peeler that does the little thin strips, but a mandolin would be great here)
handful of bean sprouts
1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro
1 tomato, sliced into strips
2 green onions, cut into match stick thin pieces
1/2 pound cooked shrimp
1/4 cup crushed peanuts
fresh basil and mint –finely chopped, for garnish
Mix together the dressing ingredients in small bowl. Add to salad ingredients and mix well.
Sprinkle with crushed peanuts and garnish with extra herbs.
*Note- I didn’t use all of the dressing. I maybe left 1-2 Tbsp in bowl and there was plenty on the salad.
Light, refreshing and full of flavor, we will definitely be making this one again!