I've been experimenting lately with the nam priks sold in the refrigerator case. They are the quintessential Thai food, eaten by Thais every day--but I have never fully embraced them. The female proprieter, Sripraphai (that's her name) has been walking me through them; their names are only written in Thai. Most are to be eaten with raw vegetables or mixed with rice. You only need a very little bit for quite a lot of rice. I have also been mixing them in with American food with excellent results; last night I mixed in the nam prik made with tamarind into a chicken-and-gravy open face sandwich. It was delicious, added tang and interest and was not, surprisingly, overwhelming. Nam prik ong, made with pork is not as good as the version I loved in Chiang Mai but is still good, especially eaten with crispy pork rinds the way the Thais do.
Sripraphai speaks excellent English and is an excellent tour guide through the mysteries of all those little containers.