Bangkok street food

Sep 29th, 2009, 12:26 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,466
I'm not sure i follow you, are my photos supposed to validate what i/others are saying?
Or are you just interested in photo's of Thia foos?
and yes i think some posts have been deleted
Smeagol is offline  
Sep 29th, 2009, 01:15 PM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 106
I’m thinking what Kerouac is on to: “WHAT THOSE WHO DON’T EAT STREET FOOD EAT” could be cool and interesting project.

I’ll hunt around and see if we can remember, find photos and GE (Google Earth) the places we ate.

Might be a bit boring in Chiang Mai though, ‘cause we ate almost two weeks worth of dinners at the same noodle location.

If many people contribute, this could garner a lot of useful information.

It’s funny, because one of my first posts in Fodor’s, back in 2000, was about asking people in country, where was the last place you ate?

Not, where do you think we’d like to eat, or your favorite place, just the last restaurant... (we still do this on every trip)

Discovered a private restaurant (to avoid the liquor laws) with newspaper windows and all, in Rome one time that kept everybody eating and drinking into the early morning hours.
karenmike is offline  
Sep 29th, 2009, 01:27 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,925
so why not start a thread along those lines, i think it would be much more interesting than this thread that seems to go on for ever
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 29th, 2009, 01:50 PM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 106
Clearly this thread is long and contains lots of words (not a bad thing in my mind) but, I’d like to remind people that no one has written (in this thread) that people who don't eat street food, are WRONG, BAD PERSON or not traveling REAL.

I believe if we were discussing New York (or XXXX), street food enthusiasm would not be pushed as much. NOT because we believe New York’s street food is not worthy of pro street food remarks, but more to the fact that street food is such an intrinsic part of Thai life.
karenmike is offline  
Sep 30th, 2009, 01:48 AM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,250
This really is getting tedious!!! .
crellston is offline  
Sep 30th, 2009, 05:43 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,631
One of the things you've missed, KW, in your discussion is that sanitation issues aren't just a matter of the vendor getting fecal matter on your food before it is cooked. Let's leave the vendor for a moment.

You earlier mentioned Hep A, as I did. Hep A is a viral illness typically spread by an infected food handler. This happens in Asia, this happens in Europe, this happens in North America. The other way Hep A is often spread is through the ingestion of contaminated shellfish. How do the shellfish get contaminated? By insufficient or non-existent sewage processing. Likewise, typhoid is spread by infected food handlers and contaminated shellfish. So places with less thorough or no sewage treatment have more contaminated shellfish.

So the whole issue of safe food and water is a complex one. Again, I recommend that people inform themselves about these matters. The resource I consider to be the best is the cdc website:

I have absolutely no objection to people eating whatever they'd like. I do think it is wise for people to make informed decisions about risks and to choose their risks. There is no such thing as risk-free; we all choose the risks we take.
Kathie is offline  
Sep 30th, 2009, 08:58 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 106
Let’s celebrate this uplifting story about growth told by GOTTALOVEPUGS above.

Gottalovepugs recounted how they, “… approached our recent first trip to SE Asia with a lot of trepidation, mostly for experiences like eating 'street food'.”

They had planned ahead NOT to eat salads or drink liquids with ice, but after “Tong” brought them, “… a whole manner of things for us to try from stalls”, they took a chance, went with the flow, tossed away their original plan of action and ate street food.

Mouth watering street food, “everything we tried was delicious”.

Gottalovepugs , wrote that they both felt a bit silly - I surmise that’s from their unnecessary apprehension about eating street food - and they now plan to be “more adventurous” on their next trips.


This account extols the best gifts that traveling has to offer, the accumulation of life changing experiences, the chance to expand your horizons and the opportunity to learn.

A great travel adventure.
karenmike is offline  
Sep 30th, 2009, 12:56 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,281
One day they'll have a good laugh while on the can projectile can't avoid doing this once in a blue moon, lol.
Mango7 is offline  
Sep 30th, 2009, 07:52 PM
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,072
Kathy - I do wish you wouldn't keep jumping to conclusions prematurely about my postings - haven't "missed" anything - I simply, out of the interests of keeping it short haven't expounded on it.

This is a forum and it is great that others can add to the information in their own time so grows organically.

I'm not about to cover the whole thing 100% as you yourself now know how big and complex an issue it is - but a knowledge of the basics can safe a holiday......

I'm fully aware professionally of the complexities of food preparation and hygiene - especially in the tropics - this is a chat forum not a scientific discussion.

The last thing I posted was actually to do with processing of food and how sugar, salt acid etc can protect against bacteria successfully breeding as opposed to chilling or freezing as used in the west – Restriction is the key as you cannot wholly prevent bacteria from entering any process.

The western concepts of "cleanliness are great - in the west - but if you use them for a yardstick in the tropics you will mislead yourself into incorrect interpretations of which food is and isn't safe to eat.

As you have re-iterated food poisoning is not just the result of bacterial toxins there are other causes.
Again you also have mentioned food poisoning is not the sole preserve of Thailand – which I hardly think needed saying - but this is a Thai forum and I have been concerned really with the cultural aspects of Thai street food and how it can give the impression of being a greater source for contracting food poisoning than it actually is.

My overall position is that it is not as bad as it looks at first glance and there are several reasons what this may be the case - some of which - not all I have pointed out here -

you obviously are doing some research into exactly how food poisoning is contracted and this is a good thing, it would prevent a lot of people missing chunks of their holiday if others too took the time to find out more about how they actually get sick from whatever they consume.
khunwilko is offline  
Oct 1st, 2009, 05:58 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,631
A number of years ago in Malaysia, the government helped put together hawker centers to reduce the incidence of food-borne illness. The hawker centers have restrooms, hand washing facilities and places for the hawkers to wash dishes and eating utensils in soap and hot water. These facilities have reduced food-borne illness in Malaysia by a tremendous amount, something like 80-90%.

Of course, Malaysia isn't the only place that has hygienic hawker facilities, Singapore is well known for this. And I was delighted to hear from Hanuman there are there are some new hygienic hawker stall areas in Bangkok now.

It's true that as a health care professional and someone who has written about travel health issues here and for a number of other sites, I do keep up on the epidemiology, public health issues and the scientific literature in these areas.
Kathie is offline  
Oct 1st, 2009, 06:17 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,160
Some of the legendary street food vendors like "Goh Hub" used to sell their foods(noodles) off a row boat in klongs. As time passes and more klongs were filled in they move to the roadside or markets. Now apart from the centers set up for the vendors the more famous one now own restaurant or chain of restaurants and have kiosks at food courts in shopping malls. At the same time, those that have restaurants situated on the street side often set up tables on the walkways giving impressions that they are street food vendors.

As Kathie has pointed out seek vendors at centers or those that have access to tap water and bathrooms to reduce your chances of getting food poisoning, dysentery or diarrhea.
Hanuman is offline  
Oct 4th, 2009, 06:21 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 106
Here is a link to a horrible food poisoning story:

This speaks to the "mince the meat", "shared supplies" and "distribution" (a lot of people get sick at once) points khunwilko made above.

A sad story, enough to think about stopping eating all together.
karenmike is offline  
Oct 4th, 2009, 06:26 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 106
Amazing, the article above is a New York Times 4,893 word report on food poisoning. Quite a read.
karenmike is offline  
Oct 4th, 2009, 06:33 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,281
Hanuman- And remember they used to clean everything in the klongs (aka horng nam), too, lol!
Mango7 is offline  
Oct 4th, 2009, 06:46 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,160
Hey Mango I still swim in the rivers and klongs as well as do other things in there when nature calls.
Hanuman is offline  
Oct 4th, 2009, 08:03 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,925
bad boys
rhkkmk is offline  
Oct 4th, 2009, 05:08 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,281
Kee nam! Mai dee!!
Mango7 is offline  
Oct 6th, 2009, 08:24 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 106
New York Times, Top 10 Food Poisoning Risks
karenmike is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:31 PM.