cooking and eating in paradise city ...
Thailand is a fruit and vegetable heaven and almost all varieties can be found in Hua Hin at any of the local markets.
Some may not grow around here, but they are transported daily, when in season.
The sheer number of them is staggering, as you will find out as you wander around Hua Hin. Stalls, some static and others mobile, spring up everywhere, so you'll never be short of ideas for new eating experiences.
Thailand is becoming more adept at producing some western fruits and vegetables - apples and strawberries, or potatoes and carrots, for instance - and whilst they are good, they still don't quite have the flavour that they do in the west.
However, local produce is exceptional and you should experiment with as many different types as you can. As a note, Hua Hin and surrounding areas are particularly well-known for producing the best pineapples in Thailand. You havn't lived until you've tried one!
We have attempted to list all the main fruits and vegetables you'll find in Hua Hin, but don't view the following as being totally comprehensive. There will always be something new to tempt you.
Why not visit our Feeding Time forum to join in discussions on anything to do with food?
|Bananas (gluay ¡ÅéÇÂ) - there are some twenty varieties grown all over Thailand. The younger, sweeter ones are eaten raw, whilst others are dried in the sun for a snack. Available year-round.|
|Cantaloupe (cantoloupe) - similar to a melon, they are not quite as sweet as their western counterparts and available year-round.|
|Coconut (maprao ÁÐ¾ÃéÒÇ) - if mature they are used to make coconut cream and when young for coconut juice. Year-round.|
|Custard Apple (noi naa ¹éÍÂË¹èÒ) - off-season from March-May, this pale green-skinned fruit is sweet with many seeds.|
|Dragon Fruit (gaew mungon á¡éÇÁÑ§¡Ã) - this pink-skinned, white-fleshed fruit was originally found exclusively in Vietnam, but now is widely grown all over Thailand. Year-round.|
|Durian (turian ·ØàÃÕÂ¹) - this fruit is an aquired taste and the smell may initially put you off, but persevere. It is highly regarded as a delicacy throughout SE Asia and available throughout the year.|
|Guava (farang ½ÃÑè§) - a very popular snack quite often eaten with sugar, salt and chilli powder. Year-round.|
|Jackfruit (khanun ¢¹Ø¹) - similar in shape to a large melon, it has a grey skin with large kernels that can be roasted like chestnuts. The flesh has a strong smell, but it is sweet and succulent. Season, March-August.|
|Lychee (lin chi ÅÔé¹¨Õè) - when peeled, this fruit has a delicious, sweet taste. The skin varies in colour from pink to dark red. Season, May and June.|
|Longan (lam yai ÅÓäÂ) - generally from the north of Thailand, this small, brown fruit has white flesh, tasting similar to a lychee. Season, variable, but best between July-October.|
|Mango (ma muang ÁÐÁèÇ§) - there are some 12 varieties of mango grown in Thailand. The sweet, light yellow ones are normally eaten at their ripest and sweetest, whilst the green ones are more bitter and normally included in salads. The best time of year is from March-June.|
|Mangosteen (mangkhut ÁÑ§¤Ø´) - predominantly from southern Thailand, this wonderful fruit has a thick dark-red skin with white flesh in segments below. Available year-round.|
|Papaya (ma la gor ÁÐÅÐ¡Í) - normally eaten in salads (somtam) when the fruit is unripe, it can also be consumed when fully ripe and sweet with some lime juice. Year-round.|
|Pineapple (sapparot ÊÑº»ÐÃ´) - particularly good from the Hua Hin area, Thailand is now one of the leading exporters of canned pinapple in the world. Year-round.|
|Pomelo (som o ÊéÁâÍ) - very similar to a grapefruit, but sweeter. They can vary in colour from yellow to orange to red. Year-round.|
|Pomegranate (tubtim ·Ñº·ÔÁ) - the edible portion of the fruit is the juicy red flesh and there are many seeds inside, it has a sour taste.|
|Rambutan (ngor à§ÒÐ) - this sweet fruit has a bright red skin that is covered in green hairs. The flesh is white and contains a stone. Off-season, February-April.|
|Rose Apple (chomphu ªÁ¾Ù) - has a green or pink edible skin. It is crunchy and slightly acidic in taste. Year-round.|
|Sapodilla (la mut ÅÐÁØ´) - eaten when ripe, it is similar in shape to a mango with reddish-brown flesh. Season, May-June.|
|Sugar Apple (noi na ¹éÍÂË¹èÒ) - also known as a custard apple, it has a green skin with scented white flesh. Best eaten with a spoon. Season, June-February.|
|Star Fruit (ma-phuang ÁÐà¿×Í§), also called carambola, is a star-shaped fruit that has a subtle, citrusy flavor.|
|Watermelon (daeng mo áµ§âÁ) - grown all over Thailand, this sweet fruit is particularly refreshing and is often made into fruit juice. Year-round.|
As previously mentioned, the above is not an exhaustive list, but it does include the main tropical fruits you can buy in Hua Hin. Eat and enjoy.
There are over 200 different types of vegetables grown in Thailand and most will be present in Hua Hin's numerous markets. As a result, we are not trying to present an exhaustive guide to them, but rather highlight the main types you will come across with their Thai names.
Aubergines/Eggplants - there are numerous varieties grown here, the most usual being of the "apple" variety (makheua brot ÁÐà¢×Í). Normally pale green in colour they are eaten raw with chilli or cooked in curries.
Green onion (hom sot keaw) - generally used in salads and fried noodles (pad thai).
Spring Onion (dok don hom) - the leaves and bulbs of these immature onions are used in soups and stir-fries.
Onions (hua hom ËÑÇËÍÁ) - not as popular as shallots, they are nevertheless used in cooking, especially after being crisp-fried.
Green Mango (ma muang dib) - although technically a fruit, we've included this here as it's often eaten raw with chilli or made into a salad.
Bitter Melon (mara jean/mara ki nok) - again, strictly a fruit, these are added to soups, curries and salads. As the name suggests, they are very bitter.
Wax Gourd (fak kaew) - this white to green oblong gourd is mainly used in soups.
Yard Long Beans (tua fuk yao) - these long, green, stringless beans are normally cut into short lenghts and added to stir-fries, curries and soups.
Broccoli (poccoli) - this memeber of the cabbage family is green to purple-green and the florets are normally used in cooking.
Morning Glory (pak boong jin ¼Ñ¡ºØé§) - this herb (if it's to be described correctly) normally grows near water and both the leaves and shoots are eaten.
Cauliflower (dok kha lam) - this member of the cabbage family can be eaten whole, although the florets are the most tender part.
Chinese Chives/Chive flowers (kui chai/dok kui chai) - not disimilar to spring onions, these herbs nevertheless have a distinctive taste, being more peppery and chewy.
Winged Beans (tua phlu) - a pod-like vegetable that is cooked whole.
Chinese Cabbage (pak kaet khao) - used in stir-fries, salads and soups, this crispy vegetable has a mild, sweet flavour.
Sugar peas (tua lan tao) - these are eaten whole, as with mange tout, and only need a minimum amount of cooking. They're also very good raw.
Chinese Mustard Green (pak kwang tung jeen) - this flowering cabbage is pale green with clusters of small yellow flowers. It has a slight mustard flavour, cooks quickly and is normally used in soup and noodle dishes.
Bamboo Shoots (nor mai thai) - these are crisp mild-flavoured shoots of the bamboo plant. Used extensively in Thai cooking.
Pumpkin (fak thong) - these large squashes have a sweet flesh and are normally used for desserts and savoury dishes.
Straw Mushrooms (hed fang) - these and other types of mushrooms are widely available and used in Thai cooking.
Asparagus (nor mai farang) - prized for their delicate flavour, these vegetables are commonly used in Thai cooking.
Water Chestnuts (haew áËéÇ) - used in both sweet and savoury dishes, these crunchy roots of water grass are known for their semi-sweet taste.
Okra (gra jiab ¡ÃÐà¨ÕêÂº) - generally deep-fried as an ingredient of sour curries or with nam prik dishes.
Sweetcorn (kao phod khao/kao phod wan) - increasinly being grown in Thailand, it can be eaten either before it's ripe, or afterwards when sweet.
Plum Tomatoes (ma kheua tet ÁÐà¢×Íà·È) - there are three varieties used in Thai cooking. The smaller ones have a slightly bitter taste and are generally included in northern dishes. Large tomatoes are used in hot and sour soups (tom yams) whilst the cherry tomatoes are reasonably sweet and find their way into salads, curries and soups.
Angle Loofah (buap liam) - this squash is also known as Chinese okra and is similar in taste to a cucumber. It is used stir-fries and soups.
Bean Sprouts (tua ngok) - widely used in stir-fry dishes or eaten raw with noodles.
Chinese Radish (hua chai tao) - this parsnip-looking vegetable is often fully cooked in curries and has a sweet taste.
Vegetable Soya Bean (tua rea ¶ÑèÇàËÅ×Í§) - quite often steamed for a few minutes in boiling water, these make a delicious snack or can be used in stir-fries.
A full list of fruit and vegetables can be found here: