Govt hopes to enshrine 'tomyam kung'

Thailand will seek to have the tomyam kung spicy prawn soup listed by the Unesco as part of the country's tangible cultural heritage. (Post Today file photo)

Early next year, Thailand will seek to have the tomyam kung spicy prawn soup listed by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) as part of the country's tangible cultural heritage.

The decision was reached at Tuesday's meeting of the Ministry of Culture's committee on cultural heritage protection and promotion, Culture Minister Vira Rojpojchanarat said after the meeting.

The term tomyam consists of tom, a Thai verb for boil, and yam a Thai noun meaning spicy salad, which uniquely refers to a Thai cuisine belonging to the Central Plains, he said.

Kung is a Thai word with a broad meaning referring to prawns and shrimps.

In preparing the tomyam kung soup, prawns are boiled with various herbs and seasoned with local condiments, he said.

A public hearing will be held next for parties concerned such as those education institutes offering cooking classes that include tomyam kung and associations of Thai food operators to garner as much as possible knowledge and information about Thai traditional tomyam kung, said the minister.

This information will be used for reference when the ministry prepares documents and produces media materials for submission to Unesco by March 31 next year, he said.

The proposal will be submitted to the cabinet for approval before being presented to Unesco, according to Mr Vira.