If you’re staying in one of Thailand’s private villas, there are plenty of delectable dishes to choose from when you want to gather with family and friends to grill some surf and turf specials on the pool terrace.
There’s something special about al fresco dining in a warm tropical climate and barbecues are the ideal easy to make the most of the relaxed, outdoor atmosphere.
Nothing quite says “holiday” like tucking into freshly barbecued food without a knife and fork and many of Thailand’s best private villas come with their own top-of-the-range barbecue units perfectly positioned to enjoy the ocean views.
Staying in to enjoy a barbecue feast at your private villa is an appealing alternative to finding a restaurant every night and with the help of your villa’s professional chef, you’ll be able to enjoy a choice of Thai dishes served straight from the grill.
Below are a few Thai barbecue classics to prepare and enjoy with advice and help from the private chef.
Street Food Inspiration
If you’ve ever been tempted by the fragrant aroma of freshly grilled chicken at a traditional Thai market where there are plenty of street food vendors, then you’re not alone. In fact, Thai chicken satays are one of the Kingdom’s most popular dishes – and you can easily enjoy them at your private villa. First of all, mix peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, sugar, curry powder, garlic and hot sauce to make a marinade. Soak pieces of chicken breast in this overnight to let it absorb the flavour, then thread the chicken onto bamboo skewers before grilling on the barbecue. Simple and irresistible.
While a tender piece of steak might not be something we traditionally associate with Thai cuisine, that doesn’t mean you can’t grill steak on your villa’s barbecue and incorporate some irresistible Thai flavours at the same time. In fact, it’s easy to whip up a Thai-style marinade. All you need is soy sauce, hoisin sauce, fish sauce, a cup of finely chopped shallots and three or four cloves of garlic. Soak two pieces of rib eye steak in this fragrant concoction overnight, and they will be ready to grill up for lunch the next day. Serve with a spicy dish of som tam prepared by your villa’s chef, and the taste-fest is complete.
If you’re on a health kick whilst on holiday, then a lean piece of grilled chicken might be your top choice for an al fresco feast. Thai lemongrass chicken packs a powerful punch of flavour thanks to the chillies, lemongrass, soy sauce and onion in the marinade. The longer you marinade the chicken for, the more powerful the flavours become. You’ll also want to include lime juice, fish sauce, garlic and sugar in the marinade to ensure an authentic Thai treat. Serve with a simple salad and rice.
If you’re staying on an island like Phuket or Koh Samui, then you’ll want to try some of the islands’ freshly caught seafood a few times while you’re there. King prawns are among the favourite choices for a barbecue, and they’re super easy to prepare Thai-style as well. First of all, baste the prawns in a sauce made of soy sauce, oyster sauce, garlic, brown sugar and lime juice. Allow them to cook, still in their shells, on the barbecue. Once they’re well done, serve with a generous garnish of coriander.
Ocean Fresh Fish
If you prefer white fish then why not try a tasty tamarind-based recipe? In Southern Thailand, you’re likely to find tamarind dishes of sea bass or snapper, and if you want to recreate them when you get back home you can also use trout or sea bream. The marinade includes water, tamarind paste, fish sauce, coriander leaves, ginger, chillies and lime juice. Prepare the fish by rinsing it, patting it dry and making three diagonal cuts along its side so the sauce can soak in. Smother in the marinade and grill the fish on the barbecue until it looks browned and crispy on each side.