Thai food is always associated with chillies and the hottest Thai Chili of all is the Prik Kee Noo Chili. Prik Kee Noo chillies are small in size, ranging from 0.5 to 5cm long but pack a mighty punch. Prik Kee Noo literally means ‘Mouse Droppings Chili’. (Kindly note that we avoided using the Sh** word here to keep this site suitable for family consumption).
In Thailand, people generally prefer the green Prik Kee Noo but the green chillies will turn red when fully ripened. The red Prik Kee Noo Chililies are perhaps just a tiny bit less explosive but not so that you would notice.
Thai people enjoy eating these firebombs raw along with many tasty tidbits and also in salads, indeed, for the uninitiated, some Thai salads can taste like the only ingredient in them is Prik Kee Noo. Prik Kee Noo are liberally used in the cooking of many Thai dishes and are frequently served, chopped up in Fish sauce, as a condiment called Prik Nam Pla. Prik Kee Noo are also available in dried form which will keep for several months.
The heat from chillies comes from the membrane surrounding the seeds so by scraping out the seeds you can reduce the heat but if you do this there is little point in using Prik Kee Noo. Go for a less mind blowing Thai Chili like Prik Chee Fah. If you should ever find yourself in an overdose situation when your mouth feels like it is on fire and you are breaking out all over in perspiration, a good antidote that will probably be close at hand is plain boiled rice. Drinking water will actually make things worse. Best of all would be dairy products like cheese, milk and yogurt. If you are using Prik Kee Noo chillies in your food preparation, you must be careful to wash your hands afterwards and avoid touching your face or eyes as this can be extremely painful.
Prik Kee Noo, for some unknown reason, are sometimes referred to as Bird’s Eye Chillies. The only association we can find with a bird is a well known song about Prik Kee Noo sung by the famous Thai singer Thongchai McIntyre whose nickname is Bird.