Wade and I had the pleasure of attending a Media Dinner at Ayara Thai near LAX in Westchester last month. Tucked away in a little part of town that I never knew existed was this amazing family run restaurant full of delicious Thai food and a beautiful story. Vanda Asapahu, the owner, and her family moved to LA from Thailand in the 80’s. Over the next 20 years her family hosted meals in their home and fed Thai Airways workers as well as VIP’s from their country, because her mothers cooking was that good! In 2004, they opened Ayara, which, is the name of a Royal elephant in a children’s book that carried a prince who believed everyone in his Thai Kingdom should be fed fairly. Since then, they have established themselves as a place to go for fresh, genuine, home-cooked Thai food and will be expanding in 2014. By popular demand, they now bottle and sell their line of sauces (Vanda’s mother makes them in the restaurant every Tuesday) and you have the chance to win 3 of their most popular by checking out the Ayara Products website and leaving a comment telling me what sauce sounds most tantalizing to you!
1)THAI HOUSE DRESSING
You’ll never look at Ranch again.
Silky smooth mayonnaise is whipped with lime juice, a hint of garlic, and a kick of spicy Thai chili for a creamy, refreshing dressing and dip. Served with our lunch side salads and House Salad, this sauce was inspired by a family friend’s recipe that beats everyday ranch dressing any day of the week. USE : On salads or as a dip
2) THAI PEANUT SAUCE
There’s Peanut Sauce.Then there’s Ayara’s Peanut Sauce.
Dreamy peanut butter and salty-sweet hoisin sauce get an invigorating kick from our aromatic garlic, zesty onion, and cane sugar. A versatile, vegetarian-friendly sauce to be used as a marinade, dressing, or even a dip for everything from our fresh spring rolls to your own veggie sticks. It’s even a delicious sandwich spread!
This is one of two peanut sauces Chef Anna Asapahu developed to serve at the restaurant when it first opened. Dissatisfied with all the watery peanut sauces she tasted elsewhere, she was determined to create something that remained true to the rich flavor of its star ingredient. USE : As a marinade, dressing or dip
The sauce that’s had everyone talking. Now yours to take home.
Roasted chili, sweet and sour tamarind, red onions, garlic, dried fish flakes, savory fish sauce, salt, and cane sugar. You’ve loved it in our When Tiger’s Cry, Pork Sensation and Thai Beef Jerky, but you can try it on any beef, pork, or lamb dish you choose. Excellent as a dip or marinade, and a perfect complement to any BBQ.
Inspired by her northern Thai roots, Chef Anna developed this recipe by slow-roasting chili, onions, and garlic for hours. When we made this at home, people could smell its delicious aromas at the end of the block. (No wonder the neighbors love us!) The sauce has become an international hit, too, with many Thai Airways crewmembers taking it back to Thailand with them. USE : Great for BBQ’s and everything else – it’s that good.
To enter, please visit Ayara Products, check out their entire line of awesome sauces and then leave a comment telling me which one you would most like to dip into!
Entries must be posted by Tuesday Dec.17th at 12pm PST. One winner will be chosen at random and contacted by email. The giveaway is open to readers in the U.S. only. The prize is valued at $30 and will be shipped directly to you from Ayara Thai.
Congratulations to my winner Lisa Golden! Thanks to all who entered and to Ayara Thai!
Thank you to Vanda and the entire Ayara family for hosting such a wonderful event and sponsoring this giveaway! It was a pleasure meeting you and enjoying your delicious food and warm hospitality!