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Bring a taste of Marnee Thai Restaurant to your own kitchen with Thai Cuisine Beyond Curry, by Chef Chai Siriyarn! Once you add Thai Cuisine Beyond Curry to your kitchen library, you’ll be as close as you can be to the true taste of Thailand without booking a flight to Bangkok. That’s because when Chef Chai Siriyarn, of San Francisco’s award-winning Marnee Thai Restaurant, aims to take your taste buds beyond curry, he really means it.
For the first time, Chef Chai shares 82 of his favorite recipes with you, including familiar favorites like Spicy Angel Wings and Pad Thai; regional rarities such as Noodles with Curry Sauce, Northern Style; and the elegantly updated classicism of family specialties like his grandmother’s Steamed Fish Fillet in Curry Mousse.
These versatile dishes make the perfect fit with today’s contemporary dining style, featuring fresh, seasonal ingredients, wholesome preparations, and an all-around celebration of the pleasures of the table. Serve a refreshingly healthful Banana Blossom and Artichoke Salad as an unexpected summer supper. Wow friends at your next dinner party with the surprisingly addictive Son-in-Law Eggs. Marvel at all the clever ways you can turn plain-old noodles into uniquely Thai creations.
And while the book’s scope extends beyond those tried-and-true curries, never fear: Steps for making all the basic Thai curry pastes, as well as plenty of recipes that put them to delicious use, are right at your fingertips. With easy-to-follow instructions, glorious full-color photos accompanying each recipe, a glossary of Thai ingredients, and plenty of Chef Chai’s personal kitchen tips, you couldn’t be in better shape to tackle Thai cooking if you were standing at his side at Marnee’s stove. Consider Thai Cuisine Beyond Curry your invitation to dive into the wonders of Thailand’s tastes. Exploring what lies beyond curry has never been more tantalizing.
To get a taste of Thai Cuisine Beyond Curry yourself, try the following recipes.
Please click on the images below for our recipes.
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut
1/4 cup shallot or red onion, small dice
1/4 cup fresh ginger, small dice
1/4 cup unsalted roasted peanuts
1/4 cup lime, sliced thin and cut into small wedges
1/4 cup small dried shrimps, washed and patted dry. Large spinach leaves, as needed.
Sauce (Yields 2 cups)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup sliced shallot
1/4 cup sliced fresh ginger
5 slices galangal (1-inch in diameter)
2 teaspoons shrimp paste
1/4 cup toasted coconut meat
1/4 cup ground dried shrimp
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1. Toast shredded coconut on a sheet pan in a preheated 325 degree (F) oven until golden brown and crisp (about 15 minutes). Stir occasionally to ensure even toasting.
2. Place shallot, ginger, peanuts, lime and dried shrimps in separate mounds on a serving platter. Set aside.
3. Wash and cut spinach leaves, use only large, nice-looking ones. Set aside.
4. To make the sauce, in a small pot, dissolve sugar and coconut sugar in 3/4 cup of water. Bring to boil and reduce to low heat. Cook for about 10 minutes to make a thick syrup.
5. Wrap shallot, ginger, galangal and shrimp paste for the sauce in a piece of foil and toast in a (375 degree) (F) oven for 30 minutes.
6. In a blender, add the toasted ingredients and toasted coconut meat for sauce with 3/4 cup of water to facilitate blending. Puree until the texture is smooth.
7. Add the blended mixture to the syrup, along with the dried shrimp for the sauce and fish sauce.
Mix well and cook another 8-10 minutes over medium heat. The sauce should become thick. Cool until well chilled.
8. To serve, place a leaf on a work surface with back facing up. Add a couple pieces of shallot, ginger, peanuts, lime wedge, dried shrimp and some toasted coconut meat on the leaf.
9. Top with the sauce and wrap with your hands. The whole wrap should be eaten in one bit to get the combination of flavors from the ingredients.
2 Tablespoons fish sauce
1 / 4 cup palm sugar, or light brown sugar
1 / 4 cup lime juice, freshly squeezed
2 garlic cloves
2-4 Thai bird chilies, or to taste, chopped
2 tablespoons dried shrimp, small size, washed and patted dry
1 / 2 cup long beans or green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cups green papaya, peeled and shredded (see note)
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 / 4 cup roasted peanuts cabbage wedges and fresh long beans cut into 2-inch pieces, to servce
1) Combine dressing ingredients, stir to mix well and set aside.
2) Place the garlic, chillies and dried shrimp in a mortar and pound until they are broken down. Add long beans, pound again. Add shredded green papaya and cherry tomatoes and pound to bruise the vegetables. Stir to mix well, pounding papaya gently with a spoon to bruise.
3) Pour dressing over vegetables. Stir to mix well, pounding the papaya gently with a sppon to bruise.
4) Stir in roasted peanuts, mix well.
5) Adjust the seasoning and transfer to serving platter. Drizzle with any remaining dressing and serve with cabbage wedges and fresh long beans.
*Note to prepare green papaya, peel and cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds and discard. With a Japanese mandolin or box grater, shred the papaya into long, thin strands about 1/16 inch wide.
There are many version of Som Tum. The Northeast style will differ from the Central Plains style.
This recipe is from the latter and is the most popular-often served at Thai restaurants overseas. You can substitute broiled fresh prawns for the dried shrimp. Just marinate the prawns in the dressing and place on top of the papaya.
You can also add some shredded carrot for the extra color and texture if you like.
Pad Thai (Kuay Tiaw Pad Thai)
2 Tablespoons palm sugar
1 Tablespoon tamarind water (see page 33)
3-4 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon lime juice, freshly squeezed
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon chili powder, to taste
4 tables spoons cooking oil
1 / 2 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 tablespoon minced sweet radish
1 / 4 cup bean curd, cut into match-stick strips
1 pound fresh rice stick noodles, soaked in warm water for 15 minutes and drained, or 1/2 pound dried noodles (soaked in warm water for 10-15 minutes)
8 medium shrimps (26-30 count per pound), peeled and deveined
1/4 cup of chicken stock or water
2-3 green onions or Chinese chives, into 1 1/2 inch lengths
1 cup bean sprouts
1/2 cup unsalted peanuts, roasted and ground
1 lime, cut into wedges fresh vegetables for accompaniment
(Chinese chives, bean sprouts, banana blossom wedge or pennyworth, if available)
1. Combine all the sauce ingredients in a bowl and stir well to blend. Set aside.
2. Heat oil in a large wok or large pan over high heat. When the work is very hot, crack the eggs into thw ok. using a spatula or wooden spoon, stir until set, about 20 seconds.
3. Add noodles and shrimps; stir briefly.
4. Add the chicken stock and cook until the noodles begin to soften, about 2-3 minutes.
Drizzle in the sauce and toss to evenly coat the noodles.
Reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook until the noodles absorb most of the sauce and begin to dry.
5. Stir in green onions, bean sprouts and half of ground peanuts.
Toss a few times and transfer to plate.
Sprinkle with the remaining peanuts and serve with lime wedge and fresh vegetables on the side.
*Pad Thai is one of the most popular noodle dishes enjoyed throughout Thailand and all over the world. I won two competitions, on in Los Angeles and the other in Thailand, for this pad thai recipe, which I am very proud to share with you. Tamarind water can be found at most Asian market. It comes in plastic jars and is ready to use, but if you can’t find tamarind where live, just double the vinegar and lime juice instead.
Rice Flour balls
1 cup glutinous rice flour
1/3 cup mashed, cooked kabocha squash
1 tablespoon coconut cream, skimmed from top of can
1/3 cup water
2 cups coconut milk
1 cup water
3 / 4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons palm sugar, or light brown sugar
1 / 4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 pandanus leaves, lightly bruised and folded and tied into a knot (see page 28)
1. Combine the glutinous rice flour, mashed kabocha squash and coconut cream in a mixing bowl.
Add 1/3 cup water, about 1-2 tablespoons at a time, and knead until the dough is soft enough to work (about 2-3 minutes); add more water if needed, but not so much that the dough sticks to your hands. Roll into several rod-shaped pieces, each about 1/2 inch thick. Pinch off small pieces of dough and use your fingers to roll into lotus seed-sized balls (about 1/2 inch in diameter).
Set them aside. Continue until all the dough is used up.
2. Fill a medium pot with water and bring it to a boil over moderate heat. Add the rice flour balls and boil until they float to the surface, about 2 minutes.
Remove with a slotted spoon and drop them into cold water.
3. In another saucepan, combine coconut milk, water, granulated sugar, palm sugar, salt and pandanus leaves. While stirring, bring the liquid to a gentle boil over low heat. Drain the cooked rice flour balls and add to the pot. Remove the pot from the heat and set aside to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
*This simplified recipe calls for kabocha squash, but in Thailand it’s often made with pandanus juice and taro, which gives the rice flour balls beautiful contrasting green and purple colors. Serve this dessert warm and in small bowls. The name of this dessert is associated with celebrations and good fortune.
To Thai people, the marble-sized dumplings resemble the seeds of the Lotus, Buddhism’s sacred flower, which is how the sweet got it’s auspicious Thai name. For extra texture, add sliced young coconut meat when served.