On 6 – 7 April 2021, the Royal Thai Embassy, Ankara, in collaboration with the Department of Tourism and Hotel Management, Bilkent University, jointly organized
“The Joy of Cooking” activity to demonstrate Thai food and Thai auspicious desserts cooking to the students of the Bilkent University.
The event was held as a lead up to Songkran – the Thai New Year.
“April is an important month for the Thai people, as Songkran - the Thai New Year - is on 13 April. Although it is a festival that is known around the world as water festival, it is actually a time of happiness and joy, when Thai people would visit their elders and families to seek blessings for the year ahead, and visit their relatives and friends to share their love and celebrate in a fun and festive atmosphere.” Mr. Charkrienorrathip Sevikul, Charge d’Affaires a.i. of the Embassy said. “The Royal Thai Embassy, Ankara, is thus very grateful to the Asst. Prof. Eda Gürel, Chair of the Department of Tourism and Hotel Management, Bilkent University, and her team for giving us the opportunity to share the happiness of the Thai New Year with the students and the interested public through “The Joy of Thai Cooking” collaboration.”
The spouses of the diplomats and the lady diplomats were behind the cooking demonstrations. Apart from presenting the world famous Thai dishes such as Tom Yum Kung (Thai hot and sour shrimp soup) and Pad Thai (Thai fried rice noodles with prawns in tamarind sauce), the Embassy team also presented three Thai auspicious desserts : Khanom Chan (Steamed Thai layered cake), Thong Ake (Sweet golden cake), and Foy Thong (Golden Egg Yolk Threads).
“There are nine Thai auspicious desserts which can be described as Thailand culinary treasures. Each of these nine deserts have auspicious meanings and are served on special occasions such as weddings, and are meant to confer blessing on the recipients.” Sevikul added.
“For example, the three we have chosen today, Khanom Chan symbolizes success and advancement, Thong Ake conveys a blessing for a fruitful career, and Foy Thong which means
golden threads bestows long lasting love and life.”
For this event, the representatives of the Embassy also prepared a special surprise: the “Foy Thong Sbacnats Delight”.
“The Royal Thai Embassy, Ankara, team is very proud to present our creation : Foy Thong Sbacnats Delight which is a fusion between Foy Thong, the traditional Thai auspicious dessert, combined with pistachio powder, a typical ingredient found in many Turkish desserts, such as Baklava. The Foy Thong Sbacnats Delight not only reflects the complimentarity of the two cuisines, but also convey the hope for a strong and long lasting bond of friendship, love and connection between the two countries.” Sevikul said. “It has been created by our current diplomats and diplomats’ spouses and presented for the first time ever at the event, and we are especially proud and excited about it. The Thai dessert and the pistachios go together perfectly to create a taste that is new yet familiar. We hope both the Thai and Turkish public will enjoy it.”
“My colleagues and I realize that we need more things to connect Thailand and Turkey so we have always been thinking about new ways and new idea to bridge the two societies. The idea finally came to us while the eight of us were rehearsing at my kitchen to prepare for this event. Two of our diplomats had just came back from visiting Gaziantep, and since most of us had already visited the city or know about the famous cuisine there, we just had a Eureka moment and just thought together to try and add pistachios to Foy Thong which we were making at the time. It was amazing, and we were jumping up and down with joy and excitement. We hope that our creation will be able to bring the Thai and Turkish people ever closer together.”
The eight Thai diplomats and their spouses are ; Mr. Charkrienorrathip Sevikul, Charge d’Affaires a.i., Mrs. Bangorn Sevikul, Spouse of the Charge d’Affaires, Ms. Nattamon Punbhochar, First Secretary, Mr. Teerawat Wongkaew, First Secretary, Ms. Suchaya Tancharoenpol, spouse of Mr. Wongkaew, Ms. Anissa Naksewee, Second Secretary, Ms. Amonrat Khongchoo, Second Secretary and Mr. Sompop Kerdmee, spouse of Ms. Khongchoo.