Kaffir lime leaves
Fresh, these can be hard to track down, but they also come freeze-dried rather like bay leaves, but with that unmistakable oriental-Thai flavour.
Use dried, pounded in a pestle and mortar or soaked in a little hot water, and they're almost as good as new. Fresh leaves can be kept in the freezer.
The ingredients list for these noble little Thai-inspired fishcakes looks very long but the good thing is they can be made and cooked with incredible speed. Serve them as a first or main course, or as canapés with drinks.
This recipe was given to me by chef Norbert Kostner at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Bangkok when I visited the cookery school there. It's lovely served as a first course or included in a cold-buffet menu.
This is a low-fat variation of Thai Grilled Beef Salad with Grapes. In Thailand they serve it with pomelo, which is very similar to grapefruit.
In Thailand, they use pomelo in salads, which is very similar to grapefruit. I have used pink grapefruit here, but when they're not available, you could ring the changes and use a thinly sliced, medium-sized mango.
Easy, authentic and full of Eastern flavour, this curry consistently appears in your top 10 favourites on the site and it's obvious why. Try it and see!