With the ubiquity of Thai restaurants around the world — by the mid-2000s, estimates placed that number around 12,000, with projections into the second decade of the millennium at more than 20,000 — two facts are clear: Pad Thai, one of Thailand’s national dishes, is found everywhere in the world, and it is impossible to dub “the world’s best,” with the plethora of variations around the globe prepared in an equally limitless number of establishments.
Traditionally an amalgamation of soaked, dried and stir-fried rice noodles; egg; chopped firm tofu; tamarind pulp; fish sauce; dried shrimp; garlic; shallots; red chili pepper; and palm sugar, this dish is usually garnished with lime and chopped peanuts. Modern plays on pad Thai include bean sprouts, garlic chives, coriander, pickled radishes, shrimp, crab or chicken. However, pad Thai is not the native dish many believe it to be.
Its full name — kway teow pad, meaning “rice noodles” in Chinese — hints at one possible origin. Others believe Viet traders brought the dish to the ancient Thai capital of Ayuthaya. In whatever manner rice noodles came to Thailand, the flavors found in the dish adapted to a uniquely Thai taste.
The popularity of pad Thai surged in the 1930s, 1940s and following World War II. The Thai fascist government under Plaeck Phibunsongkhram brought the dish to national attention in an attempt to promote nationalism in the country. Phibunsongkhram pushed the dish, in part to reduce rice consumption, a major export for Thailand, and also to modernize the country. The prevalence of pad Thai also had health and economic benefits for the people. Back then, it was prepared for approximately 3 cents a plate, and even today it can be found for around $2 as a street food in Thailand. The government at the time distributed pad Thai recipes and encouraged people to take to the streets and sell the dish from wheeled carts.
In many ways, that tradition lives on today in Thailand. As pad Thai is considered a specialty dish, it’s not often found on the pages of restaurant menus in Thailand. The restaurants do not dare compete with the food hawkers creating the street food in the local markets and in stalls along the sidewalks. Day in and day out, these masters create this one special dish, and they do it so well, there’s no reason to mess with success.
Imagine waking up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee, a light breeze dancing on your face, and views so beautiful you begin to think it is a simulation. The United Kingdom is teeming with unique accommodations that will please your eyes. Check out these stays with stunning views on your next U.K. adventure.
The Sports Industry Awards returned with a bang last night as 200 guests packed the W Hotel Great Ball Room for the gala ceremony.
AdventureWomen, the travel company specializing in adventure tours for women, announced a partnership with African Wildlife Foundation. The organization supports the conservation of Africa’s wildlife through education, community development and sustainability projects. As part of the partnership, the two organizations will host a women’s safari to Zimbabwe in May 2022.
Carillon Miami Wellness Resort, where innovative wellness and balanced indulgence come together in one extraordinary beachfront setting, recently partnered with First Responders Children’s Foundation, a non-profit organization providing financial support to children and families of first responders. This partnership formed the Carillon Cares: Summer of Heroes offers, including a donation to the foundation for each stay booked, which supports giving back to those who fought on the front lines during the pandemic.
The biggest names in the Middle East sporting community will gather for the Sports Industry Awards as the event returns for its eighth edition. SPIA recognizes the achievements of individuals, organizations, facilities and campaigns that contributed to the development of sport in the region.
Although much changed in the past year, Cancún still has the joie de vivre we need right now after months of cabin fever — even with safety measures in place. In fact, the first half of 2021 may be a good time to rediscover Mexico’s home-grown Caribbean resort town in a slower, more relaxed mode that contrasts its rollicking “spring break” reputation of old. One place to take in Cancún at its best is JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa, a mile up from the convergence of night clubs, chain restaurants, souvenir emporiums and shopping malls along Avenida Kukulkan.
June marks Pride Month, largely credited to bisexual activist Brenda Howard who organized Gay Pride Week and the Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade in 1970, one year after the Stonewall Riots. The parade eventually become the New York City Pride March, leading to Pride Month and similar parades and marches around the world.
Haven Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa, an all-suite, adults-only, all-inclusive oceanfront resort, announces a new experience suited for epicurean travelers: The Chef’s Table. At Haven’s fine-dining restaurant Olios Mediterranean, The Chef’s Table offers the best seats in the house, right in front of the chef’s working station and open, top-of-the-line kitchen. And the actual table is beautiful in its own right: made from reclaimed wood and complemented by a turquoise glass chandelier.