Where would we be without our mothers, the women who brought us into this world and the women who nurtured and took care of us so that we could become the people we are today. For many, a mother is the person who gave birth to you, but to some it is an adopted mother or a woman who has strong presence in your life and has helped shape you in one way or another. It is for this reason that here at Banana Tree, we celebrate Mother’s Day to recognise those important women in our lives.
While in the UK Mothering Sunday is celebrated on the fourth Sunday of lent, an ever-changing date, in Thailand, home to some of our favourite Thai cuisine, Mother’s Day is celebrated on August 12th for a very special reason.
Celebrating the Queen
August 12, Mother’s Day in Thailand, also happens to be Queen Sirikit’s birthday, a woman who is considered a mother to everyone in Thailand, which is why this day was proclaimed a national holiday.
To commemorate the Queen’s birthday, streets and houses are decorated by the people of Thailand with the national flag of Thailand as well as the Queen’s personal blue flag – all public buildings across the country are illuminated with majestic lights and draped with the flags as well. A multitude of portraits of the Queen are also hung, so that people may pay their respects to her and pray for her long life. Additionally, there is an abundance of Jasmine across the country as the plant pays respect to mothers. Did you know that it’s also the symbol of maternal love?
Traditionally Honouring Mothers in Thailand
While everyone in Thailand celebrates Queen Sirkit on Mother’s Day, they also partake in other traditions of the day, which include celebrating their own mothers.
A significant start to Mother’s Day is giving the Buddhist monks of Thailand food as an offering – this act displays a child’s love and gratitude towards their mother. The day continues in school, where Mothers are invited to a special Mother’s Day ceremony and are honoured by their children. Children shower their mothers with cards and gifts, including Jasmine garlands, food and jewellery.
A Feast Fit for a Queen
As per any holiday, delicious food is of the utmost importance on Mother’s Day and Thailand has no shortage of mouth-watering pan-Asian cuisine for children to make, hopefully with some help from their dads! A favourite for all is Phad Thai, Thai styled fried noodles with a satisfying crunch that is enjoyed worldwide — other dishes we’d expect to see at a Mother’s Day feast would be Tom Yum (a soup consisting of coconut milk, prawn and various vegetables), Green Papaya salad or Gaeng Daeng (a traditional red curry).
Where else can you find modern Asian cuisine, the likes of which are served in Thailand on Mother’s Day? Why at any one of our Banana Tree locations of course, with restaurants in Oxford City Centre, Chelmsford and across London. We are delighted to offer a wide range of Thai dishes like the famous Phad Thai, which we offer with chicken, beef, prawn and even tofu. So, what are you waiting for?