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  • Elizabeth Cochran

Thai culture: Lets talk about street food

I love to travel and one of my favourite parts of this would have to be enjoying the new foods and cuisine. With Thai culture, street food is a major thing and as an American I was not used to this. Also, guess what? Thai people do not cook and many of them don't have the basic kitchens or skills of cooking.

Street Food

What is street food? So in Thailand there are less rules about food regulations. People can just set up a stall or a cart and sell food on the street. It really is that simple for them. They keep selling it and if they do good, then everyone will learn that this corner has tea. This corner always sells noodle soup and so forth. It's simple. Thai people have really understood the whole convenience of food and food stalls. Their food stalls are attached to their motorbikes and they can bring their food items anywhere on the go. This is so creative and I have never seen anything like this.

Common street food

There is a big variety of street food you can get in Thailand. You can get noodle soup with various meat or fish added in. Fried rices.Cooked or fried fish. Pad thai. Spicy dishes made with vegetables or fish. There are a variety of curries you can get. Also, for the drinks there is soda, coffee (western style like americano and traditional Thai coffee black and strong!), bubble tea or boba, thai tea and other various tea's. Also lots of fruit shakes or smoothies. The trick of finding street food is finding the places you like and figuring out when the street vendors normally come. The hours are not set in stone, I mean come on their stall is on wheels so don't expect normal hours. The street food is delicious and affordable. A drink can be anywhere from 20 baht to 70 baht (.63 cents to 2 dollars). A meal and drink will be about 100 baht (3 dollars) for street food. The food is very affordable and convenient for you to eat at pretty much anytime.

No cooking!

A thing though that has been really hard for me to wrap my mind around is Thai people generally do not cook and do not have kitchens. So while street food is convenient, I miss having control over what I am eating in the sense of I know what the ingredients are and eating more healthy food or western style food. I enjoy cooking a lot and I realized this was a hobby of mine when I no longer could have this lifestyle of cooking my own food. I find it interesting that Thai people don't cook and some even lack skills of cooking -which seems like common knowledge to me. It is a different lifestyle and adjusting to street food has been both good and bad. Its cheap and delicious, but I miss cooking.

Food delivery applications

Thailand is all about convenience and they have set up very effective food delivery apps. There are two main ones- Grabfood and FoodPanda. I am not sponsoring them, just telling you about convenience of food in Thailand that is all. The apps work well and you can order right from your mobile phone. It delivers to your address within 30-50 minutes and it is rather good service. The only downside for English speakers is some of the apps are in Thai and only in Thai. Also, the drivers like to call you to confirm or maybe ask questions about your order sometimes and they are always Thai so every now and then there may be confusion on where they are supposed to deliver. I have never had any big issues though with my food at all- which is the whole point. It is important to note this is not offered everywhere in Thailand.

One last thing!! 7-eleven

Thailand is known for 7-elevens and it is not like a gas station at all.. It is 24 hour service with a variety of foods. There is a variety of lay chips/crisps, fruit, vegetables, ready to go food, fresh coffee or teas, snack food, ramen, dumplings, buns, bread, toasties, really anything. They have refrigerated food and you can buy it and have it warmed up too. They have rice dishes, sausages, ramen, dumplings, toasties and you can have it warmed up for you right there. Also, you can buy lots of household items. You can get shampoo, lotions, toothpaste, soap- all of it. 7-eleven is where everyone goes. Thai people go several times a day and it has amazing service. The store restocks daily so everything is fresh. I go often and am amazed how it is affordable and so many items. I don't need to hardly go anywhere else to buy anything because it often has it.

Thailand has delicious food and is surrounded upon the idea of food and convenience. Whether that is with fast street food or food delivery apps. Thai food is majorly affordable, delicious, and convenient to find.

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