Smelly Issan food


Dear Hillary,

I have a problem with my wife’s cooking.  She does a mean sausage, egg and chips these days, and even has a go at toad in the hole.  It’s not her British cooking that’s the problem – it’s when her girlfriends come over and they start cooking that Issan stuff.  The really, really, really bad smelling stuff.  Honestly Hillary, when I walk in the door of the house I get hit with it.  It’s so bad I come close to puking.  She knows I hate the smell, but she does this at least twice a week.  It puts me right off my food as well.  What should I do?  She’s a great woman, other than the Issan cooking.


Dear Jimmy,

This is an easy one to fix, my Petal.  You say you live in a house.  All houses have a back door, and Issan cooking, to be really genuine should be cooked outside.  Most homes that foreigners live in have two kitchens – one indoors for the sausage, egg and chips and the other outside for the Issan, where the pungent and the putrid smells (from an ingredient called “Pla Ra”) just waft away with the afternoon’s breezes.  The one outside is called the “Thai kitchen” and does not get used for toad in the hole, either, as all the cooking implements, woks, etc., are impregnated with it.

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