Anyone who does creative work aspires to own and use the best equipment possible. Modern designers and graphic artists want to have the latest and most capable computers and software; painters want the finest-quality canvas, pigments and brushes. Cooks are no different. When they walk into a shop that sells cooking equipment they will inevitably see things that they want, even though they may already have a kitchen full of appliances and utensils at home.
GRATE EXPECTATIONS: Above, ‘kratai’ coconut graters and stone mortars, below.
But some of these implements and devices are more than just tools for cooking. They reveal a great deal about the culinary culture of the era that produced them, the materials and ingredients that were available, and the creative artistry of its cooks. Looking back into the history of Thai cooking there are two pieces of kitchen equipment that would never be missing from any kitchen: a kratai, which is a blade for grating coconut set into a wooden base, and a khrok, or mortar.
This article is older than 60 days, which we reserve for our premium members only.You can subscribe to our premium member subscription, here.