Green papaya salad

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 19 April, 2012, 12:00am


This Thai classic is refreshing in the summer heat. In Thailand, street vendors shred the papaya by holding it in one hand while whacking it with a sharp knife. They make it look easy, but it's safer to use the shredder attachment of a mandoline (be sure to use the hand guard), or to cut the papaya into thin, long strands using a sharp knife on a cutting board.

If you want to make this dish more substantial, add fresh shrimp (about 6cm in length) that have been boiled in the shell, peeled and then halved lengthwise. Mix in the shrimp when you add the tomatoes.


2 large garlic cloves, or to taste

4 red bird's-eye chillis, or to taste

40 grams roasted peanuts

30 grams Chinese dried shrimp

A 1cm ball of tamarind paste

200 grams green papaya, peeled then sliced into long, thin strands

100 grams carrot, peeled then sliced into long, thin strands

4 snake beans, cut into 2cm pieces

About 40ml bottled fish sauce

About 30ml fresh lime juice

12 small grape tomatoes

To garnish

Lettuce leaves

Roasted peanuts, finely chopped

Fresh lime wedges

- Use a sharp paring knife to slice the chillis in half lengthwise, then remove and discard the seeds and membranes.

- Slice the chillis into small pieces.

- Put the garlic, chillis, peanuts, dried shrimp and tamarind paste into a large mortar and pound until roughly crushed.

- Add the papaya, carrot and snake beans and pound to bruise the ingredients.

- Stir in the fish sauce and lime juice.

- Taste the salad and adjust the seasonings, if needed.

- Gently fold in the tomatoes.

- Line a plate with lettuce leaves then pile the salad on top, scatter roasted peanuts on top and serve with lime wedges.