Earlier this week I posted this quick pic of a bowl of khao soi, a delicious curry and egg noodle dish coming out of the Chiang Mai area of Thailand. After visiting the region, this dish quickly become one of Cory and my favorite dishes and we often make it at home. Unfortunately, khao soi (as with many Thai dishes) takes a lot of preparation and we don’t always feel like putting in the effort. It’s on these nights that we sometimes decide to use prepackaged ingredients.
I won’t lie, when we choose to go that route we are often sorely disappointed. No matter how “authentic” these types of products claim to be, they rarely meet that standard and typically lack a vital flavor, spice, or ingredient. Huge bummer.
This time around though we were extremely pleased by our final product! We used two new products that I can honestly say will become a regular star player in our kitchen.
Lobo brand Kao Soi Seasoning
As I said, khao soi is one of our favorite dishes and I have a pretty great recipe to make this from scratch. Unfortunately, while it’s a fairly simple dish to ‘get right’ it does take quite a few ingredients and a lot of time to prepare. That’s why I was so thrilled to find a product that takes out the preparation time and still makes a delicious final product.
All we had to do was add the seasoning packet to a can of coconut milk, add chicken and let it simmer, and then tweak at the end with lime juice and fish sauce to get our preferred flavors.
And the end result? Fantastic!
This seasoning created exactly what we love most about khao soi – a mouthwatering bowl of Thai-style comfort food. This seasoning has that perfect mix of curry flavors including a hint of cardamom that you usually find in Massaman curry and adds a new depth to the flavor. When mixed with a little lime, cilantro, and fish sauce you have that ideal combination of sour, sweet, salty, and spicy that every authentic Thai dish contains.
The only thing lacking was that bit of extra heat Cory and I love in all our Thai dishes. That’s not to say there isn’t a good bit of heat to this product, but Cory and I like things spicy!! So, that brings us to the second ingredient up for review.
We purchased this product from our favorite Thai product website, ImportFood.com, though you may be able to find this product in other local Asian markets. We haven’t looked yet but I’ll update if/when we find it!
Thai and True Hot Chili Oil
Oh my goodness … what an amazing product this is!
I first discovered Thai and True on a visit to Whole Foods. They had a string of Thai and True products on their shelves and while I didn’t purchase any of them, I did read the back of the jar and learn a little bit about the Thai and True company.
Talk about awesome! Thai and True is a company based in Oregon that hand-makes a wide variety of GMO-free, gluten-free, and Vegan products. They are stocked in various stores around Oregon and Washington and work hard to retain that ‘local’ company feel.
I recently made a trip back to Whole Foods and decided to purchase two of their products including Hot Chili Oil. Hot Chili Oil is often used as an add-on sauce found on tables at Thai restaurants (similar to how we serve ketchup). This particular product is a combination of rice bran oil, Thai chilies, vinegar, fried garlic, and sea salt – a very simple combination that packs a big punch!
While it is described as an oil, it’s actually more of an oily paste of ground up chilies and garlic. With a very well-rounded base of flavors, this chili oil can be added to nearly any Thai dish (or non-Thai dish) to up the spice level. One teaspoon of this product bumped our entire batch of khao soi from a “one star” dish to a “two star” dish. I have a feeling we’ll have this single jar of oil for quite some time!
We look forward to trying this product in many of our other favorite Thai dishes and will make this product a staple in our kitchen going forward.
Thai and True is only sold in select stores across Oregon and Washington though you can order the products directly from their website as well.