Pork with fresh green crunchy Thai vegetables is something special
There are some Thai meals which deserve special attention. Pork is usually cooked well in Thailand. And, Thailands blend of spices and herbs are world renown. However it’s the mix of these fresh vegetables and herbs in many dishes which often bring a Thai meal up to world class standards.
In this case the main vegetable is morning glory and the herb is basil (fresh leaves). To tell the truth the only negative thing about this dish was that they left the pork skin on. It was the soft type. I know a lot people like crispy pork skin but I try to avoid both variations.
Nonetheless the pork meat was still there and it blended beautifully with the crunchy morning glory and aromatic basil leaves.
What is Thai morning glory?
This is a common question with a simple answer. Morning glory is the nickname given to water spinach in Thailand. It’s also known as Chinese water spinach and Kangkong. Within these names there are also several natural variations of morning glory.
Quite why this leafy waterborne vegetable has been branded a homonym is another story. One nobody really seems to know the answer too. But it does send some people from the UK and Australia into giggles when reading a menu.
What does pork with morning glory and basil taste like?
Fresh, meaty, crunchy and aromatic. There’s nothing quite like biting into some succulent pork followed by crunchy morning glory that’s been sauteed with garlic and chili. Add in the gorgeous flavour and texture of fresh basil leaves to make this one of my favourite dishes in Thailand.
I’ve not come across many other countries outside of Europe who have embraced fresh basil as much as Thailand has. It’s refreshing and somewhat opulent to eat so much of this herb here. It grows cheaply and I can only hope the Thais one day start to produce pesto!
Where to find pork with morning glory and basil in Thailand?
From Bangkok on up to the north seems to be the favored area. The green leafy vegetables and herbs seem to thrive in that region. I found the dish mainly available in mid-scale restaurants. But in budget cafes basil seems to be getting more popular as tourists are flocking to the aromatic smells being created by the cooks inside.
Vegetarians will be happy to hear I’ve seen and eaten cashew nuts with morning glory and basil! The nutty cashews make a wonderful substitute for pork.
In either case it’s not an expensive dish so for any budget. If you see morning glory or basil on a Thai menu just go for it!
This is an additional article featuring Thai food
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