According to Thai food expert McDang, rice is the first and most important part of any meal, and the words for rice and food are the same: khao. Palm sugar, made from the sap of certain Borassus palms, is used to sweeten dishes while lime and tamarind contribute sour notes. The plain rice, sticky rice or the khanom chin (Thai rice noodles) served alongside a spicy Thai curry or stir-fry, tends to counteract the spiciness. Thai farmers historically have cultivated tens of thousands of rice varieties. "rice covered with curry"), or for short khao kaeng (lit.
Another unpolished grain, black sticky rice has a rich nutty flavor that is most often enjoyed in desserts. Other varieties of rice eaten in Thailand include: sticky rice (khao niao), a unique variety of rice which contains an unusual balance of the starches present in all rice, causing it to cook up to a sticky texture. "rice covered with curry"), or for short khao kaeng (lit.
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. Both Peru and Ecuador claim ceviche as their national dish. 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). They are tom yam goong (4th), pad thai (5th), som tam (6th), massaman curry (10th), green curry (19th), Thai fried rice (24th) and moo nam tok (36th). "rice covered with curry"), or for short khao kaeng (lit. Some westerners think it's a jumble of flavours, but to a Thai that's important, it's the complexity they delight in". Thai cuisine is the national cuisine of Thailand. The food is pushed by the fork, held in the left hand, into the spoon held in the right hand, which is then brought to the mouth. A traditional ceramic spoon is sometimes used for soup, and knives are not generally used at the table. It is common practice for the both the Thais and the hill tribe peoples who live in north and northeast Thailand, to use sticky rice as an edible implement by shaping it into small, and sometimes flattened, balls by hand (and only the right hand by custom) which are then dipped into side dishes and eaten. One type, which is indigenous to Thailand, is the highly prized, sweet-smelling jasmine rice (khao hom mali).