When we shop in a western market, we will usually only see one variety of banana, the Cavendish banana.
In Thailand, there are many varieties, each with a unique shape and size, each with their own unique texture and flavour with colours ranging fromorange, to blue and to red. While in Canada our banana creativity might end at eating them raw, or cooking them in banana bread or muffins, in Thailand, the methods of eating and preparing bananas are almost as varied as the varieties available.
They are barbequed, roasted, frozed, dried out in thesun, used in desserts, deep fried, and the flowers of the banana tree are used in place of lettuce in some salad dishes.
The province Kamphaeng Phet relies so heavily on the export of their unique Kluai Khai variety of banana that they hold a special festival for it every September. The festivities include a market, contests, competitions, a parade and of course a lot of bananas to eat! One of the highlights of the fair is the Krayasat making competitions.
Krayasat is a popular form of Thai sweet snack. It is similar in size and shape to a Rice Krispie square, but with a few more ingredients added to give it a heartier texture.