Pla ra

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Pla ra ( , Lao: ປາແດກ) is fermented fish sauce, popular in Northeastern Thai cuisine.

It is made by pickling several varieties of fish, mainly Snakehead Murrel (Channa striata) and herring. The fish is cleaned and cut into pieces, after which it is mixed with salt and rice bran. The whole is then left in a big jar covered with a wooden lid, to ferment for three months to a year.

Pla ra sauce is often added to som tam. There is also a dried powdered version of pla ra that has been successfully marketed recently.

Other uses

In a recent move by police and redevelopment workers to evict vendors from a market at Khlong Toei, Bangkok, the local vendors barricaded themselves. During the scuffles that ensued, the traders made "stink bombs" with thin plastic bags filled with pla ra and hurled them at the police. At noon of 1 February 2010 bags of excrement and pla ra were thrown into Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva's house. Abhisit linked the incident to Thaksin's assets seizure trial. Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban (in charge of security) explicitly blamed the UDD for the incident. Afterwards, the perpetrator was arrested. The perpetrator confessed and claimed that he threw the excrement because he was fed up with police indifference to his complaints of people smoking...
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