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Tommy's Tangy Thai Tastes...

If you're from the United States the name "Tommy Tang" will probably already be well known to you as the host of his television cooking classes.. This popular TV Chef is right up there with the Galloping Gourmet and Julia Childs but, of course, has specialized in the preparation and presentation of Thai dishes which are his forte. Tommy's cooking expertise is syndicated across 360 PBS TV stations which, in fact, gives him a larger audience and wider exposure than NBC. Not bad for a Bangkok grown, Thai boy!

Tommy Tang moved to the United States in 1970 where, using his natural love of Thai cooking and kitchen skills, he chased his culinary dream to be not only a creative chef but a successful businessman as well. He can justifiably claim to have hit both targets "bull's eye" which makes his wife and son very happy. Aside from his ever popular TV series, Tommy's latest U.S. venture is an chain of Thai restaurants under the banner "Tommy Tang Express". It should be a winning formula for this culinary entrepreneur and American lovers of Thai food.

Naturally, the dedication and hard work never ceases so recently Khun Tommy returned to Northern Thailand (his 5th visit) for his second, on location, "shooting" at Come Inn House Restaurant. Restaurant proprietor, Khun Nit, was there to help Tommy with menu suggestions so that days "table d'hotel" featured Goong Makhaam, Laab Kreua with fresh vegetables, Gai Muang, Deep fried Fish, sticky rice and a delicious vegetable dish of Morning Glory. Once the cooking was finished and the feast laid out, Tommy, with his usual easygoing style, called out "Come on, take a seat. Let's sample this wonderful food!" Guests accepted with delight but the film crew had to keep on working no matter how mouthwatering the aromas! Filming on location is always to a very tight schedule but, one cameraman confided, they have all regularly enjoyed Tommy's food when the program is being recorded in a TV studio. Then Tommy invites all the studio crew to enjoy.

Other local, Chiangmai locations in Tommy's hectic filming schedule included the picturesque Mae Ngud Reservoir and a lovely setting at the Four Seasons Resort Chiang Mai in Mae Rim a huge, old waterbuffalo had a "walkon" appearance. The hotel's kitchen staff excelled themselves with their carved fruit & vegetable presentation and Tommy was most impressed. Next stop was a silk shop at Sankampaeng where Khun Tommy surprised everyone by coming up with a recipe on how to cook silkworms! He says they have a nutty flavor!

After visiting Chiangmai, Tommy and his Team moved on to Chiangrai before flying south to Koh Samui. Then, as a guest of China Southern Airlines, Tommy toured several Chinese cities in the southern region. He and his crew were hosted in fine style wherever they went and, in Sipsong Panna, Tommy found a rustic village house where he was able to reciprocate by cooking a typical Thai meal for the villagers. It was a great day with lots of smiling faces from locals and visitors alike.


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