Listening to Rattama Pongponrat talk about food can almost make your mouth water. The 36-year-old gastronomic director of Minibar Royale, food consultant, and author of Im Ook Im Jai Comfort Diary: Delicious Recipes Of Family And Friends retells food stories with intense passion, vivid comparisons and a glint in her eye. Not only can you detect her love for food through countless stories, you can actually taste such deep love in every single one of her dishes which hold warmth, balanced ingredients and hidden details.
Im Ook Im Jai Comfort Diary: Delicious Recipes Of Family And Friends is Rattama’s first cookbook, but it just doesn’t recount recipes. Besides her amazing family recipes, Rattama also hand-picks friends of hers that she considers true foodies to trace back the memories of their upbringing and roots through their choice of recipes. With an impressive list of friends, Rattama manages to include the likes of Moderndog’s Thanachai Ujjin, DJ Maft Sai and Pol Lt Col Narabodi Sasiprapa.
French and English educated, Rattama found her affection for food at a young age. After graduating with a master’s degree in urban planning from London School of Economics, Rattama moved back to Thailand to join Mass Rapid Transport Authority of Thailand, and later the Museum of Siam while accepting conceptual catering jobs because she is passionate about it. Then her true calling beckoned and the urge became too hard to resist — she finally decided to devote herself ful-time to food.
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