The first Thai restaurant in London was opened during the 1960’s by HRH Princess Jurairat Nasiriman (1910-2000) (พระเจ้าวรวงศ์เธอ พระองค์เจ้าจุไรรัตนศิริมาน), the granddaughter of HRH King Mongkut (Rama IV). Princess Jurairat chose to offer this salad on the menu and named it “Salad of Thai Milkweed Flower“. (Other names: Cowslip creeper, Telosma Cordata)
This fresh and tasty salad is so vibrant and easy for us to enjoy, it takes in the very basic flavors, sweet, salty, hot, and sour, and wraps them in a creamy coat of reduced coconut cream. The milkweed flower buds retain their crunchiness and their pleasant fragrance with only a gentle and very quick blanching in sweet boiling water.
This classy food is cooked in less than 10 minutes and the princess presents it with an extra crunch of deep-fried sweet shallots and garlic and pleasantly decorates it with fresh red long chili juliennes and reduced coconut cream.
Everything you need to lift your spirits.
Besides being tasty and very easy to make, its cooking philosophy teaches us to be humble with our actions so not to obstruct the final goal, and to preserve the fundamental characters of the ingredients we use.
- 5-7 pieces shrimp (กุ้ง) heads on, shell on, about 150 gr
- 100 gr pork meat (เนื้อหมู) sliced thinly
- 200 gr cowslip creeper flower (ดอกขจร) (about 2 cups)
- 2 tablespoons crispy fried shallots (หอมแดงเจียว)
- 2 tablespoons crispy fried garlic (กระเทียมเจียว)
- 2 tablespoon granulated sugar (น้ำตาลทราย)
- 1 piece fresh red long chili (phrik chee fa) (พริกชี้ฟ้าแดง) cut into juliennes
- 1 piece Chinese garlic (กระเทียมจีน) medium size
- 5-6 pieces fresh bird’s eye chili (kee noo suan) (พริกขี้หนูสวนสด)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice (น้ำมะนาว)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce (น้ำปลา)
- 1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar (น้ำตาลทราย)
- 1/3 cup coconut milk (หางกะทิ) reduced to about 4 tablespoons
- In boiling water, cook the shrimp until just done, for about 1-2 minutes.
- Peel the shrimp and slice them halfway. Remove the black vein. Set aside.
- In the same water, cook the pork until done, for about 1-2 minutes. Set aside.
- Add granulated sugar to clean water and bring to the boil.
- Place the flower buds on a strainer and dip the flowers in the sweetened boiling water three times, 1-2 second each time.
- Transfer the flowers immediately to an ice bath, Strain and set aside
Method Salad Dressing
- In a small saucepan over low heat bring the coconut cream to a boil, mix it constantly and keep stirring until the coconut cream thickens and small oil drops appear on its surface. Set aside and cool to room temperature.
- In a mortar and pestle pound the garlic to a smooth paste, add chilies and roughly bruise them
- Add lime juice
- Add fish sauce
- Add granulated sugar
Method Combine Salad
- In a serving bowl, mix the cooked shrimps, the cooked pork and salad dressing
- Add the blanched milkweed flower buds, mix well
- Add half of the reduced coconut cream (about 2 tablespoons)
- Add crispy deep fried garlic and shallots, toss everything gently to mix
- Decorate with the rest of the reduced coconut cream and fresh red long chili juliennes
- Serve immediately