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Kirimaya Takes Local Sourcing Even Closer to Home

Submitted by on October 23, 2011 – 12:19 amNo Comment

Special to Road Trips for Foodies
From Tourism Authority of Thailand

Set on 800 acres of lush greenery bordering a UNESCO World Heritage National Park, the rainforest and a majestic mountain range in Khao Yai, Kirimaya is a unique resort imbedded in a sanctuary of nature, enjoying cool, crisp, clean mountain air year-round.

As the first stage of its organic project, Kirimaya recently developed and planted a five-acre farm of organic produce that will eventually supply 100 percent of the resorts’ vegetable and herb requirements.

The project is being overseen by hands-on creative Executive Chef David Bedinghaus, who just recently joined the Kirimaya team. With more than 30 years of experience, David’s knowledge of both local Thai and International food, as well as his passion and creative flair, positions him as the perfect candidate for this project. He has been seen changing his Chef’s hat for gumboots as his hands-on approach literally has him planting crops.

Khao Yai’s rich fertile soil and temperate climate make it ideal for the organic farm. Ten staffers work full time on the farm, where the ‘seed to harvest’ period can be from 45-60 days depending on the crop.

The farm will consist of 160 blocks of plants, using a “drip irrigation” system close to the surface of the soil which controls both the moisture content of the soil as well as limiting weed growth, without using chemicals. Organic fertilizer will be used on the plants. Plant blocks are 1.2 meters wide and 18 meters long with varied crop spacing depending on which plants are used. Each plant will be grown in four blocks, being harvested one week apart to give continuous supply until the end of the season.

The first phase of the planting includes:

Salad bar vegetables – a variety of 12 different lettuces including butter head, cos, frillice, green batavia, green oak, iceberg, red leaf, rocket
Local vegetables – asparagus, baby carrots, bell peppers, cherry tomato, Chinese cabbage, Chinese kale, crookneck squash, Japanese pumpkin, spinach, red cabbage, white chives, sweet corn
Thai spicy berbs – chilli, galangal, ginger, lemongrass
Herbs for international foods – celery, Italian parsley, Japanese mint, lemon balm, lemon thyme, oregano, peppermint, rosemary, thyme, sage,
Thai leaf herbs = coriander, green shallots, holy basil, Thai basil
Seasonal – strawberries, Japanese sweet potato

Further stages of the Organic Project include:

Use of herbs from the farm in a range of specially designed holistic spa treatments
Cooking classes for guests using produce from the farm
Guest participation in harvesting of crops
Developments of the resort’s own organic curry paste for green and red curries

The name ‘Kirimaya’ means ‘illusion of mountain’.

(Photo courtesy of Kirimaya)

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