Recipe for Pad Krataim – Garlic Sauce – from Fraser’s Timberline Thai
February 26, 2009
A vacation from her native Thailand six years ago changed “Thim” Kanyana Wofford’s life forever. Visiting a friend in North Carolina, Thim did something far different from her everyday work in a bank ” she worked in her friend’s Thai restaurant. Thim learned to cook during that vacation.
“I never cooked Thai food before working with my friend,” she said.
Almost every day, the same man came into the restaurant to eat. This man, Mitchell Wofford, missed the mountains of his home state of Colorado. He soon persuaded Thim to marry him and move to Granby. Mitchell is retired from a career in the U.S. Army. Putting that experience to work, he was instrumental in the opening of Timberline Thai, Thim’s restaurant in Fraser.
“I would never have opened without his help,” Thim said. Mitchell was instrumental in navigating the maze of permits and paperwork. Thim learned to cook in her friend’s restaurant, but continues to cope with the never-ending paperwork required for the business side of the food service industry.
She said, “In Thailand, I worked in a bank so I understand business, but not having English as my first language, I find it difficult to understand some of the forms.” However, she has the business she wants and that makes up for the challenge of paperwork.
She shares chef duty with older sister Jai Donkhamphrai, who enjoys frequent visits from Thailand to help out in the restaurant. When not at the restaurant, Thim enjoys walking her dog Bamboo Shoot who is a Japanese breed – Shiba Inus.
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“The first year I came here, I tried to do everything outdoors with my husband,” she said, “but now I’m very tired from my work. If I have the day off, I like to hang out with my dog, stay home, clean the house and watch Thai TV all day.”
When asked what she missed about Thailand, Thim said, “I do miss my friends, family and especially the food. In Thailand, there are many kinds of food. You can buy everything you like to eat. Here, you can’t. You have to make it. That’s why I had to open this restaurant.”
Thim wakes up late and rarely eats breakfast, often eating her first meal of the day around 2 p.m. during the afternoon lull at the restaurant. After work, she arrives home around 9 p.m. and usually makes a simple noodle dish for dinner. Sometimes Mitchell cooks American food for them to share.
“Drunken noodles, pad Thai, pad krataim and all the Thai curries are popular at my restaurant,” Thim said. She is especially fond of broccoli and snow peas and her favorite fruit is watermelon. Thim is not big on spicy food, saying, “Sometimes I eat medium hot food, but that’s enough for me.” In addition to tom yam soup, Thim enjoys the hot and sour soup at Pearl Dragon II, and her favorite – the green chili at Sharkey’s.
One of the nice things about Thim is her ability to remember her customer’s names and what they like to eat.
“I think I always remember everyone because usually, everyone eats the same thing all the time, they never change,” she said. “But I think everyone can remember, not only me.” She’s modest, because she’s much better at remembering names than most.
Thim’s menu evolved by first picking dishes she liked, then they had to be easy to cook and fast, “Because I only have one wok!
“I have many ideas about fancy Thai food. I can’t do it now, but some day I will have a bigger restaurant somewhere in Grand County.”
Thim would like to thank her customers for their friendliness, their loyalty throughout the years and for making her feel at home in the mountains. She recommends to those who wants to cook Thai food, “You need to have a good wok and the right brand of ingredients because each brand has a different flavor.
“I’d like to share many recipes, but I worry you can’t find the ingredients here. Pad krataim (garlic sauce) is very easy and has a good taste. Everyone can eat it, even the kids, as it is not spicy at all.” This recipe is for one person, but can easily serve two or three by doubling or tripling the ingredients.
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp. crushed garlic
6 oz. sliced chicken (beef or pork)
1 tsp. oyster sauce
1/2 tsp. soy sauce
1/4 cup water
1/8 tsp. white or black pepper
1 tsp. cooking wine
Heat vegetable oil in the frying pan (or wok) until it gets hot. Then add garlic and stir together with oil. Add chicken and stir. Add oyster sauce, soy sauce and water and stir. Add pepper and wine and stir. Continue to stir together for about three minutes. Serve with white rice or steamed mixed vegetables.
” Contact Susan Stone at 970-531-1952 or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions, comments or suggestions.