Thai farmers historically have cultivated tens of thousands of rice varieties. Thai meals typically consist of rice (khao in Thai) with many complementary dishes shared by all. When time is limited or when eating alone, single dishes, such as fried rice or noodle soups, are quick and filling. In his book The Principles of Thai Cookery, celebrity chef, writer and authority on Thai cuisine McDang wrote: "What is Thai food? Every country in the world has its own food profile. When placing their order at these places, Thais will state if they want their food served as separate dishes, or together on one plate with rice (rat khao).
Traditionally, a meal would have at least five elements: a dip or relish for raw or cooked vegetables (khrueang chim) is the most crucial component of any Thai meal. Khrueang chim, considered a building block of Thai food by Chef McDang, may come in the form of a spicy chili sauce or relish called nam phrik (made of raw or cooked chilies and other ingredients, which are then mashed together), or a type of dip enriched with coconut milk called lon. Meats used in Thai cuisine are usually pork and chicken, and also duck, beef, and water buffalo. In his book The Principles of Thai Cookery, celebrity chef, writer and authority on Thai cuisine McDang wrote: "What is Thai food? Every country in the world has its own food profile. By this show of national identity, the community can resist social pressures that push for homogenization of many ethnically and culturally diverse communities into a single all-encompassing group identity such as Latino or Hispanic American. Thai cuisine is one of the most popular cuisine in the world. An alternative is to have one or smaller helpings of curry, stir-fries and other dishes served together on one plate with a portion of rice.
Australian chef David Thompson, a prolific chef and expert on Thai food, observed that unlike many other cuisines: "Thai food ain't about simplicity. They are similar to the Teochew mee pok. With over 40 distinct ethnic groups each with its own culture and even more languages, it comes as no surprise that Thai cuisine, as a whole, features many different ingredients (suan phasom; Thai: ส่วนผสม), and ways of preparing food. Janer (2008) observes that this sharing of the same plato nacional by different countries calls into question the idea that every country has a unique national dish that is special to that country; she states that cuisine does not respect national and geopolitical borders. "beautiful rice"). Many dishes that are now popular in Thailand were originally Chinese dishes. This naturally aromatic long-grained rice grows in abundance in the verdant patchwork of paddy fields that blanket Thailand's central plains.
Only the husks of the red rice grains are removed which allows it to retain all its nutrients and vitamins, but unlike brown rice, its red color comes from antioxidants in the bran. Some westerners think it's a jumble of flavours, but to a Thai that's important, it's the complexity they delight in". Simplicity isn't the dictum here, at all. In Latin America, dishes may be claimed or designated as a "plato nacional" although in many cases recipes transcend national borders with only minor variations. Thai meals typically consist of rice (khao in Thai) with many complementary dishes shared by all. Thai noodle dishes, whether stir-fried like phat Thai or in the form of a noodle soup, usually come as an individual serving and are not meant to be shared and eaten communally.. Both Peru and Ecuador claim ceviche as their national dish. Chopsticks were foreign utensils to most ethnic groups in Thailand with the exception of the Thai Chinese, and a few other cultures such as the Akha people, who are recent arrivals from Yunnan Province, China.