Savory bites that both bring you into the moment and are momentous in flavor.

Amended Dec 3, 2015, post Thailand trip! 

Ok, SO! I have been making Miang Kham recipe for years (thanks to Basil Thai of Paso Robles!), but something just wasn’t right with the sauce and it always bothered me. I sampled every recipe I could find online, making subtle tweaks here and there, to no avail.

My recent trip to Thailand was blessed in more ways than I can share in this blog post (stay tuned…) but one of my little trip perks was having the chef of Phuket’s villa resort, Anantara, look at my recipe and straighten me out.

But first, let me ‘splain this decadent amuse bouche!

If you’ve never had it, bee-line to your nearest and dearest Thai restaurant and ask for Miang Kham. An appetizer made up of small plates of deliciousness that you put together yourself. Slightly reminiscent of Korean BBQ, but Thai.

They took all the best ingredients of Thai food; coconut, peanuts, ginger, lime and chili’s and made a crispy, fresh mouthful of yummy, all in one little Betel Leaf, or “cha-phloo” as it’s known in Thailand. A leaf is generally not big enough to consider making a small taco from, but that’s essentially what Miang Kham is all about.  Build your own bite, stacking it how you like it, as sweet, hot, spicy, crunchy as you want. Miang Kham is actually the sauce you smear on the leaf first, and then the other goodies are piled on top.

Oh! And best paired with a crisp, dry rosé to really experience the umami!

It’s a fabulous party dish if your into wowing your guests with exotic foods, although it needs some upkeep on the fresh leaf detail, but overall, it’s new, fresh, yummy and an all time fav over here.

Miang Kham

Build your own bite – Choose from sliced
lime, diced fresh ginger, roasted peanut and toasted
coconut. Wrap in fresh spinach leaf and add Miang Kham
sauce. Pop in your mouth for a uniquely Thai burst of

Finished Dishes set out clustered together..

*I’ve provided links for items not easily found if you’ve no local Asian markets in your area.

The Sauce – see recipe below – larger bowl
1/2 pound Betal Leaves *OR* as I prefer, LARGE spinach leaves
1/4 shallot diced small – small dish
2 limes — removed rind and slice into 1/4 rounds –
small dish
3-4 ginger cut into fingernail size or minced  – small
3-4 t shaved/toasted coconut – small dish
3-4 t whole shelled roasted peanuts – small dish
6 Serrano chilies or use Thai chilies (prik kee noo)
3-4 t dried shrimp (traditional in Thailand, not so easy to find here)

OmTHAT_MiangKamMIANG KHAM: (Chutney)
2 tbs shrimp paste
2 oz fresh galangal, cut into slivers and roasted until fragrant
1.5 tspn coarsely chopped ginger
2 oz chopped shallots
1/3 C brown sugar
1/4 C toasted coconut
process in food processor (or traditionally with a mortar and pestle) until the consistency of
thick sauce. spoon in to bowl and serve with above..

Take a large leaf, coat with chutney,
peanuts, toasted coconut shavings, ginger, red onions
and chow!

This is a conversation starter and a crowd pleaser. It’s omlicious and if you can find it at your next Thai food destination, try it!

**The choice of what leaves to use is up to you. Some use lettuce or spinach leaves due to ready availability, but to get an authentic flavor you should use the fresh cha-phloo leaves offered by These leaves are also known in English as Betel Leaves, or Piper Sermentosum.