Fast Food Thai Style: Thai Market Food at it’s Best

Traditional Thai street food

With Pookie up country taking care of some family business for the weekend that left me to fend for myself, and in true bachelor style I lived on fast food. Not just any fast food mind you, just the best fast food in the world. Thai food from small markets and street carts.

Sure, I live in Pattaya which is a nice sized city with all the amenities of the western world, McDonalds, Starbucks, Pizza Hut and KFC to name a few. At their best those places can’t even consider what they sell as food. I could have gone to the supermarket and bought peanut butter and chips as well but when you live in Thailand there is nothing like good fresh Thai food.

Soi Buakow just before the Thai night market Thai Night market on soi Buakow in Pattaya Fish vendor at Thai night market

One of my favorite haunts is a small night market on Soi Buakow just before the bend in the road that takes you up to Sai Pattaya Klang. The market has a little bit of everything from clothes to mobile phone accessories but it’s the food that makes this market. They start setting up about 4pm and you can easily find your way to the market by just the smell alone.

There is a nice dining area where you can pick your food and sit down to enjoy it or you can get your Thai food to go. Either way it’s some of the best food in Pattaya. There is pretty much something for everyone here that likes Thai food, some spicy and some not so spicy. Fish, Chicken, traditional Issan dishes and even hot dogs if you so choose.

Food at the Thai night market on Soi Buakow in Pattaya Food at the Thai night market on Soi Buakow in Pattaya 2 Food at the Thai night market on Soi Buakow in Pattaya 3

One of my all time favorite dishes can be found at several stalls here. I still don’t know it’s name so maybe one of the readers can help me out here. It starts out looking like a medium sized fried dough ball, there are usually piles of these balls on the table. When you order one they put the ball into a bowl and crush it up revealing that it is really filled with rice and spices. Next a small plastic bag of fermented pork is added to the mixture before they add noodles, peanuts and a healthy dose of red pepper flakes. Pet Mak Mak ( very spicy ). You can see all the ingredients for this dish in the first picture below and then the end product in a bowl, absolutely delicious.

Ingredients for Thai Market dish

My favorite Thai dish from the Thai night market chicken hearts, chicken parts and Thai sausage greens served with your Thai market food

Of course being in bachelor mode and afraid of starving I had to order more than needed, because you never know when the hunger for great Thai food will strike again in the night. Just to make sure you should always have some chicken hearts, assorted chicken parts skewered, Thai sausage and greens around. And no fast food Thai meal is complete without the appropriate alcoholic beverage to wash it down.

Thai dinner bachelor style

You can keep the various foods of the world, give me a small Thai market or food stall and I’ll be well fed for a lifetime.


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24 Responses to Fast Food Thai Style: Thai Market Food at it’s Best
  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Tim, Talen. Talen said: Fast Food Thai Style: Thai Market food at it's Best [...]

  2. Joe
    September 6, 2010 | 6:06 pm

    Eating local. If you keep this up, you can stay forever. ; )

    • Talen
      September 6, 2010 | 6:54 pm

      Joe, I’m hoping so…also hoping to drop a few kilos:)

  3. Malcolm
    September 6, 2010 | 8:00 pm

    Talen , this was also one off the thinks that attracted me to our village , I swear the folks here at the street stalls are the best cooks in the world , I remember in the States no matter were you eat are what you ordered you had to season it a lot before eating , I am amazed that here in the LOS they season the food to perfection . Like you I’ll take the Thai fast food any day . Malcolm
    Malcolm recently posted..Family-and Retirement -there and hereMy Profile

  4. Malcolm
    September 6, 2010 | 8:02 pm

    Talen , I forgot to add that I have gotten hook on fish sauce and I find myself adding it to everything , how about you and fish sauce ???. Malcolm

    • Talen
      September 6, 2010 | 8:09 pm

      Malcolm, I have been using a bit of fish sauce recently as well…not quite hooked yet but getting there.

      I don’t even want to think about American food all filled with chemicals and preservatives.

  5. Martyn
    September 7, 2010 | 6:14 am

    Talen walking up from Second Road to Soi Buakhao via Soi Diana my neck of the woods is a right turn at the top, heading towards the Tuesday and Friday market. I take it this place is a left at the top and the market is way down the road on the left hand side. I hope you can follow all that.

    I’ve hardly been to this market before, maybe once or twice but the food looks knockout. I could finish the plate in the top photo in one sitting, no problem, that’s the kind of food I eat in Thailand.

    It reads like you have got your feet under the table and out of the water, and you’ve started to settle into a relaxed way of life. That’s got to be therapeutic with a capital T.

    Gotta dash. I’m off downstairs for some chemicals and preservatives.
    Martyn recently posted..Thailand Blogs – August 2010 ReviewMy Profile

    • Talen
      September 7, 2010 | 10:25 am

      Martyn, you are dead on with the directions and I understood it completely.

      Believe it or not I couldn’t finish that plate you admired …had to leave the sausage for later.

      Theraputic is exactly how the past weekend felt….it seems I am settled in now and thank god the water park is now closed at my condo :P

  6. Paul Garrigan
    September 7, 2010 | 6:14 am

    Hi Talen, I always wondered what was in those balls; I don’t eat meat so I couldn’t try for myself. I do enjoy market food and it is quite amazing how you never hear about people getting food poisoning. It is good to know that you’re not going to starve when the wife leaves town for the day :-)

    • Talen
      September 7, 2010 | 10:27 am

      Paul, the great thing about that dish is that you can exclude any of the ingredients…just tell them you don’t want the fermented pork and the dish is still amazing.

      I know I have never gotten food poisoning in Thailand but it does seem to be a worry of a lot of people…even those who have been coming for a long time.

    • Talen
      September 7, 2010 | 10:28 am

      Paul…almost forgot…I haven’t seen the magazine around Pattaya as of yet but I am still looking.

      • Paul Garrigan
        September 7, 2010 | 10:29 am

        No worries Talen. You seem to be getting out and about anyway so I’m sure you will come across it :-)

  7. Susan
    September 7, 2010 | 6:43 am

    Hey Tim,

    Now all of that looks amazing!! Hope the bachelor weekend is going well. Love you and Miss you!!

    • Talen
      September 7, 2010 | 10:29 am

      Sue, bachelor weekends always go well :) The food is amazing …wish I could send you some but it’s best enjoyed in country.

      Love and miss you too…

  8. ChuckWow
    September 7, 2010 | 12:06 pm

    Boy, your pictures are making me hungry !

    As a “bachelor” I just about lived on the Som Tum found in the alley left of Soi Diamond just off of Walking Street and the Hamburger Denmark, Shawarma, and “Banana Pancake” (Roti) vendors on the Soi in front of the Marine Disco all knew me by name.

    Those were the days – now I just have to contend with my mother in laws cooking. (Quite good actually – she used to have a restaurant in Nakhon Sawan.)

  9. Talen
    September 7, 2010 | 3:08 pm

    Chuck, some great food can be found by Marine Disco that’s for sure…I have yet to meet a Thai woman that can’t cook…thank god or Buddha as it were :P

  10. Oneditorial
    September 7, 2010 | 6:35 pm

    Why are you doing this to me? These are the kinds of food I grew up with. It is torturing me to see pictures of the food I used to eat regulary while I was in Thailand. Sigh…

    • Talen
      September 8, 2010 | 3:43 am

      One, Come back to Thailand…the Thai food is calling you…

  11. Catherine
    September 8, 2010 | 12:41 pm

    I have to agree with Malcolm – in the LOS they do season the food to perfection. Elsewhere, I’m often adding salt, pepper and anything else at hand.

    In Thailand, I only have to request more cut chilis with fish sauce (phrik naam bplaa and/or naam bplaa phrik – sometimes one works and the other doesn’t).

    But that’s because some don’t believe me when I ask for Thai spicy.
    Catherine recently posted..Stu Jay Raj is Back in Bangkok with Cracking Thai FundamentalsMy Profile

    • Talen
      September 8, 2010 | 3:53 pm

      Cat, you and Malcolm are dead on…I never use anything like salt or pepper because everything is perfect…although depending on the dish I will ask that it be pet nit noi.

  12. SiamRick
    September 14, 2010 | 1:58 pm

    OK, you Pattaya foodies are going to have to take me to these market gems! You know, I’ve never eaten fish in Thailand but I love fish. I just don’t know what to order. So if you can lead me, I will be available in October. (Hey, I didn’t even mention beer yet!?!? There shall also be beer!)
    SiamRick recently posted..A visa for every occasion in ThailandMy Profile

  13. Lani
    September 16, 2010 | 10:27 am

    This is one of the reasons why I hated Ecuador. I missed Thai food.

    Isn’t that weird? To say one of the reasons why I came back was because I love the food???

    I’m getting hungry. . .
    Lani recently love you long time thai women vs white womenMy Profile

    • Talen
      September 16, 2010 | 5:01 pm

      Lani, not weird at all. The last year I spent in America I was having dreams of Thai food.