Yam Samun Phrai

Yam Samun Phrai

If you love som tam then you should also try this salad from Northern Thailand, the Yam Samun Phrai. Yam Samun Phrai like any Thai salads is a very tasty one, so tasty you will think a rice can accompany it, made with carrots, daikon radish, onion, different herbs and spices with minced pork and dried shrimp drenched in a salty sour and sweet dressing it’s an explosion of flavours.

I still remember the first time I made this as I saw this recipe on a travel show called The Hairy Bikers when they had this Asian Adventure, it was on their Northern Thailand trip where I was introduced to this dish. In that episode they went to some remote place near Chiang Mai and enjoyed some indigenous dishes like this. If I am correct I think they had enjoyed this one with some wild pig curry and what’s even better the ingredients of the dishes prepared on that episode was foraged and hunted in the forest nearby.

While New Zealand have lots of forest I guess I will not forage for our ingredients today as most of it are available in Asian shops while it may not be authentic as the one on the TV show I bet this will be as close as it can be. How about you have you ever tried this salad?

Yam Samun Phrai
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2-3
Pork and Dried Shrimp
  • 1 tbsp palm sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1½ lime juice
  • 1 tbsp coconut milk
  • 1½ cup julienned carrots
  • ¾ cup julienned daikon radish
  • ½ white onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 thumb sized white turmeric, peeled and julienned
  • 1 tsp thinly sliced Kaffir lime leaves
  • 1 tsp chopped cilantro
  • 2 red chillies, thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp thinly sliced Thai basil
  • 1 tbsp thinly sliced lemon grass, white part
  • 2 tbsp roasted peanuts
  • 1 tbsp crispy fried shallots
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame seeds, plus more to garnish
Pork and Dried Shrimp
  1. In a small pan heat oil then add the dried shrimps, cook in medium heat until fragrant and crispy. Remove shrimps then set it aside.
  2. Add the pork then cook until it is brown in colour and cooked through. Add the shrimps back then season with fish sauce. Set this mixture aside.
  1. In a small sauce pan combine palm sugar and water, simmer in low heat until palm sugar is completely dissolved. Let this cool.
  2. Once sugar mixture has cooled down mix in the fish sauce, lime juice and coconut milk. Pour this mixture into the Pork and Dried Shrimp. Set this aside.
  1. Combine all salad in a bowl together with the seasoned Pork and Dried Shrimp, toss to combine then top it with more toasted sesame seeds then serve.


Yam Samun Phrai Wide


1 Response

  1. suituapui says:

    I love these Thai salads, so fresh and refreshing. Throw in a bit of bird’s eye chili, for that extra kick! I just tried making pomelo salad today.

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