CarolCooks2…This week in my kitchen…Salt Fish, Papaya Salad with Blue Crab and Gingerbread Cake…

Welcome to my kitchen...I have been baking more than I ever have for a long, long time…Testing recipes for my cookbook…Come and join me…

Watermelons…we were gifted another one yesterday and although it is very kind I think like the bananas both us and all our neighbours are now both banana and watermelon weary we have run out of ideas… I am eying those mangoes which are growing nicely they will be a few weeks yet though and the Jackfruit…

ข้าวกระยาสารท​ (Krayasart) is an ancient Thai dessert sweet…this sweet, fragrant sticky roll is lovely to eat but also so important that they are made for a merit-making ceremony …with Krayasart dessert as well.

Merit making is an important part of daily life here for many Thais…In Thai Buddhism, the word “merit” is frequently used, especially in relation to giving. In Buddhist societies, such meritmaking is common, especially those meritorious deeds which are connected to monks and temples.


We were out walking and came across these delicious bites being sold…I will definitely be back for more…made with sugar, honey, sesame seeds, boiled rice, coconut and peanuts they are a delightful bite…

Som Tum Khao Phod...Spicy Papaya Salad with crab and sweetcorn…


We love Papaya salad and it is a staple in our house there are many variations here some have Pla ra (Thai: ปลาร้า, pronounced [plāː ráː]), also called ปลาแดก pla daek, is a traditional Thai seasoning produced by fermenting fish with rice bran or roasted rice flour and salt fermented in a closed container for at least six months.

I don’t as I am not too keen on the taste however Aston does this recipe doesn’t but if you are familiar with Pla ra I am sure you know how much to add.

Crab is used in this salad but you could use prawns, mussels and or squid.




To serve 2/3 persons.

  • 2 blue swimmer crabs…cooked and broken into pieces
  • 1 corn cob cooked and charred on the BBQ and then sliced off the cob or steamed and sliced we just like a bit of char on our corn.
  • 1 tbsp dried shrimp(optional)
  • 300 gm shredded green papaya
  • 50 gm shredded or julienned carrots
  • 1 long snake beans chopped in 1” long pieces
  • 6 cherry tomatoes halved
  • 2 shallots sliced or 2 green onions sliced I use either depending on what I have in my fridge or garden.
  • 2/3 garlic cloves
  • 1-2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 2-10 chillies depending on heat required
  • 1 tbsp palm sugar…optional or as required per your taste…I use very little maybe a tsp.
  • 1 tbsp roasted peanuts ( optional)

Let’s Cook!

Prepare vegetables, julienne green papaya and carrots, cut cherry tomatoes in half, boil crab, and cook sweet corn or out of a can is fine just drain. If you get everything prepared first, the salad will take you only less than 5 mins and it is ready to serve.

Put Chilli(s) in the mortar smash them couple times with pestle (be careful if you smash them too much, it can get spicy!), then add lime juice and then sugar, smash them again until sugar is dissolved.I normally add my lime in cheeks and leave them in the salad as do Thais.

Add the cherry tomatoes and smash it with the pestle couple times so the tomatoes juice come out if you are using dried prawns add now.

Add fish sauce and peanuts, mix them with the pestle, then add papaya and carrots in batches and mix them again. I use a long-handled spoon with my pestle it is easier to pound and turn mix over to combine…It takes a little bit of practice but you will soon get the hang of it.

Lastly, add your cooked crab but just mix them in with a spoon instead and it’s done!



Cakes…I have never made so many cakes for a long time they were spoilt with the banana bread and are now demanding cake…

I attempted to make a ginger cake and as I have made a few cakes over the years I didn’t read the recipe properly…It was an absolute disaster, rock hard didn’t rise and went into the bin…on reading the recipe as I am nothing if not a trier I will not let a recipe beat me…I should have warmed the syrups and sugar with the addition of some water…The baking soda I should have combined with the milk…sigh..that will teach me…

Take two…

Ginger Bread Cake…



  • 175 gm flour sifted
  • 1 level tbsp ground ginger
  • 1 level dessert spoon cinnamon powder
  • 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 level tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp of milk
  • 75 gm treacle or molasses
  • 75 gm golden syrup
  • 75 gm brown sugar
  • 75 gm butter
  • 1 large egg beaten

Sift the flour and the spices together. then mix the baking soda with the milk and set to one side.

Heat the treacle, syrup, sugar,butter plus75ml of water in a pan and gently heat until the sugar has dissolved do not boil.

Add the syrup mixture to the flour and spices and mix..beating until smooth.

Then add a little at a time of the beaten egg mixing thoroughly after each addition then add the milk stirring in thoroughly.

Pour the batter into a prepared 2 lb loaf tin or round tin and bake on 170C/Gas 3 for 1 1/4-1 1/2 hrs as per the recipe…my oven tends to run hot and 55 minutes was ample.I would check after 50 minutes depending on your oven.

This one rose and was a nice texture and not suitable for building a wall like my first effort…That will teach me to read the recipe…

This week we also had some salt fish we went to a market which comes here about every six months where there are lots of beautiful clothes which are made from handwoven cloth from the very North of Thailand by the hill tribes also lots of dried and salt fish, pork and beef dried and flossed in different ways quite a lot of different foods so of course, we brought some to try…The fish was very, very salty and you can’t eat very much(or) I can’t it also has quite a strong smell… it is eaten with sticky rice, raw garlic cloves and chillies…Yes, you just bite into a raw chilli…

Thank you for reading I invite your comments as always xx

About Carol Taylor: Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a fabulous weekend xxx

18 thoughts on “CarolCooks2…This week in my kitchen…Salt Fish, Papaya Salad with Blue Crab and Gingerbread Cake…

  1. Pingback: CarolCooks2…weekly roundup 23rd-29th Feb 2020… | Retired? No one told me!

  2. Pingback: CarolCooks2…This week in my kitchen…Salt Fish, Papaya Salad with Blue Crab and Gingerbread Cake… — Retired? No one told me! – Sarah's Attic Of Treasures

  3. purpleslob

    I love watermelon! How could u ever tire of it! I’m kidding! I know when you’re flooded with 1 thing, it gets tiresome.
    I love crab too, but all the other ingredients, hmmm not sure about those.
    Glad you tried again with the cake!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Oh I am nothing if not a trier it’s still isn’t perfect so there will be a take 3 it needs to be a bit stickier for a good shortbread cake… Haha.. try some be adventurous you might love some of them… Haha… Have a great weekend…

      Liked by 1 person


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