New food is all the better
when enjoyed with new friends.


After a 12 hour train ride from Bangkok to Chiang Mair, my Airbnb hosts Toto and her Aunt, Rose welcomed me with open arms and made me feel right at home. When they learned of my interest in eating insects (5 minutes upon my arrival) Momma Rose said, “Okay, tomorrow we go to market.”

Momma Rose’s garden of exotic herbs and fresh vegetables is incredible. With our fresh organic ingredients from her garden and nearby street market, this dish, hands down, has been my favorite.

Due to my joy for cooking exceeding my joy for filming, I missed a few crucial steps and ingredients. So here’s the breakdown of our papaya salad on rice with tuna, eggs, and crickets.


  • 4 cups of sticky rice
  • 6 Thai galangal ginger leaves (to flavor rice while cooking)
Papaya Salad:
  • 1/2 papaya
  • 1/2 cup of baby prawns
  • 1 cup of salami
  • 3 tuna fish (head n’ all)
  • 4 small tomatoes
  • 2 chili peppers
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 small white onions
  • 3 limes
  • Dash of salt, pepper & sugar
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup of peanuts
Cricket Garnish:
  • 1/2 lbs of crickets
  • 1/8ish cup of soy sauce
  • 1 cloves of garlic
  • Dash of sugar and pepper
  • Soy sauce

Put it all together: Crush up papaya salad with a mortar and pestle, add to a dollop of rice and load on the crickets!!

After following the lead of Momma Rose and Toto who were picking away at the platter of crickets, I found they were quite an addicting side snack; a nutritious one at that. Thanks for everything Rat U-thit Soi family!


Now that my palate and nose is getting cricket savvy, time to sniff out some insect farms…

7 thoughts on “Papaya Cricket Salad with Pro Thai Chef, Momma Rose

  1. Did you notice how the younger girls were weirded out by the crickets? Their younger culture has unfortunately been heavily influenced by western culture. We need to turn that train around!!!

  2. I don’t know, Ebin. Only weirded out young woman I saw was the white woman (visitor, I bet). I’ve watched this ?4-6? times. Love the whole food process: search, purchase, preparation (& banter!). So much fresh. Those wriggling fish, must be local? Nice. I want to smell that kitchen! Sit down at that table!!

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