David Thompson: A guide to Thai ingredients

Chef David Thompson, of Sydney's Long Chim, is known for his mastery when it comes to Thai cuisine.

As soon as he visited Thailand at the start of his career, he fell in love with the everything Thai. "I found the culture enthralling and the food tantalising after realising it's not just about green chicken curry and money bags," he says. 

Here are David's favourite Thai ingredients and why you should be using them:

Fish sauce

David reveals that he loves using fish sauce in almost everything to get a deliciously salty flavour. 

Add to stir-fries, papaya salads or dipping sauces for a salty hit. 

Lime juice

Since Thai food is often salty and sweet, David says a squeeze of fresh lime juice can add a nice acidic balance. 

Lime juice is the perfect addition to a lip-smacking salad dressing or squeezed over a noodle dish. 

Palm sugar

For a great sugar density in Thai food, David cannot go past palm sugar. The great base of many marinades and sauces, palm sugar gives a mouth-watering sweetness that is so unique to many Thai dishes. 

Good coconut cream

David says that the key to creating great texture in curries is to use a good-quality coconut cream. In all of David's restaurants they use a homemade coconut cream for a velvety finish that the tinned version just can't capture. 


For a signature hit of spice, David loves adding fresh chilli. A Thai dish wouldn't be authentic without a touch of spice and David likes to use chillis to enhance the other flavours in a curry, stiry fry or sauce. 

Want more? We thought you might like this video.

Like this artice? Subscribe to our newsletter to get more articles like this delivered striaght to your inbox.

By registering you agree to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Privacy Notice


Sign Out

Join the Conversation

Please note, LifeStyle cannot respond to all comments posted in our comments feed. If you have a comment or query you would like LifeStyle to respond to, please use our feedback form.