1 1, Chatuchak,
Talk about a crash course in Thai cuisine. This lively Bangkok market is a veritable Disneyland for traditional Thai dishes and ingredients. Thai mangoes, coconuts, longan fruit, jackfruit, dragonfruit, durian and countless species of bananas, mangosteen (my favorite), lychee, custard apples, rambutan and oodles more! Ever tasted sapodilla fruit? I hadn’t either until I visited Bangkok, but I long for it daily now that I’m back in the states, so make the most of all the exotic fruits you’ll see and smell in Thailand. Reminiscent of a mango in shape with a light brown skin, sapodilla is divinely soft and fragrant with a flavor that evokes honey and caramel. And don’t listen to what people say about stinky durian. You may not care to eat it raw (it’s indeed stinky), but cooked and used to make a dessert like durian ice cream or custard, it’s deliciously different. And there’s so much more to see and sample at Or Tor Kor Market.
If you want to know what’s in all those vibrant pots of curry and steaming noodle soups, just look around at the mountains of produce in the market. This is some of the best and freshest produce in all of Thailand. You’ll find fire engine red chilies, bird’s eye chilies, vivid yellow heaps of turmeric used to make yellow curry, fresh stalks of lemongrass used for spicy soups, sweet Thai basil, nubby pieces of galangal, ginger, and bamboo shoots. There’s fermented fish, endless sorts of dried fish, the likes of catfish and shrimp, and so much more.
Or Tor Kor market has everything you could ever crave under one roof. Literally. Want a filet of beef? They’ve got that. Ten different kinds of sticky rice? Yep. Chicken feet? Check. Like I said, anything you want. And after you’re done checking out all the produce, you’re bound to be hungry. You’ll find stalls with freshly squeezed juices aplenty, from guava to lychee, Khanom Krok (little coconut milk & rice flour pancakes), chicken and beef satays, sausages, coconut crepes, puffed rice cakes, sticky rice treats, and palm sugar desserts. It’s right across from Chatuchak weekend market, so if you happen to be in Bangkok on the weekend, you can explore two great markets in one shot.