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A Thai Dinner Party at Home, Part VI: Bringing It All Together

You’ve gathered the utensils and spent time in the kitchen experimenting screaming and sucking your burned thumb to make all the wonderful Thai dishes you want to share. Time to eat!

Get some tea and coffee going, if you like to have them. The tea is consumed, hot or cold, with the meal. Thai coffee can be served with the desserts.

Each setting should include chopsticks (and a rest, if you have them), a rolled, wetted finger towel on a small tray, fork and spoon, water glass and tea cup, napkin and dinner plate. Tie or fold the napkin in a hat or festive shape if you’re feeling adventurous.

If the dinner is more formal, an unpatterned, dark silk runner would be nice to have. Add placemats (woven bamboo or fronds if you have them) and some flowers. (Thai places often float small orchids in water in a dish on the lazy Susan, with a couple of candles.) And don’t forget the modd music! Find a nice instrumental collection of Thai pieces and play it low.

Next, set the food out. (Of then this is done with the diners in their places, so they can appreciate the presentations.) Place the rice in the center of the lazy Susan (you did get one of those, right?) and surround it with your soup, fish and curry entrées, salad and sauces. Include the steamed or stir-fried greens if you made that dish.

When the tea’s hot, start eating!

I like to place the desserts, and any fruit dish, on a sidebar table with the serving gear for the treats and coffee. Once the diners have had their fill of the main courses, you can move confidently to desserts.

I hope you enjoy your experiments with Thai cuisine! I always find it to be very tasty and interesting switch from “the usual,” and your diners will think they’ve traveled far and wide…

Enjoy the Heat!

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