The best quality of street food which you could get on the way should be in Asian, so simple and joyful. Eating outside or on the way is a sense of joy and celebration. You can eat whenever and whatever, in any occasion and location, because they are just so easy to get. There is not necessary to be restricted or formal, instead you can spend few minutes waiting for the tasty and golden banana roti baked with greasy butter, somewhere in the busy street corner; you can drink a warm rice noodle soup prepared by a little food cart. Does not matter whatever the vendor put into the soup, could be fish sauce, pork offal soup or pork blood, finished with fresh coriander. It is just so right, while it is probably 30 degree in the afternoon. Or, just as simple as a fresh opened coconut full of sweet juice water. It is Thai flavor on the way.

Night market

When we arrived at Krabi, it was20150210_134429 about 21:00. We were certainly not afraid of finding a local place to eat, just like we did else well in Thailand. What you should expect is that Thai food are everywhere. Unfortunately, Krabi is not like other over popular and touristic places, where is not much local restaurants. Streets are much less populated. However, when you keep the faith about the Thai street couture, we accidently entered a busy night market full of food carts which was just hided in those empty streets. At that moment, when you saw so much ready cooked little piece of rice with meat and vegetables wrapped in 20150211_192244banana leaves, I knew it must be cooked with coconut milk, one of my favorite south east flavor. Fried sour and sweet rice noodle (Pad Thai) was wrapped with egg omelet (probably south west Thai style, I guess), and served with raw soybean sprouts and peanut crumbles, finally fresh lime juice to awake all the flavors. Northern style Pork green curry with coconut milk cooked in small hot pot, together with yellow noodle. Its sweetness was much stronger than the normally spicy Thai curry. With little money, my tongue felt treated like queen.

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Khao Kha Moo (braised pork leg)

The next morning in Krabi, we again started to search somewhere for brunch. 1423361796736Just in the corner of a downtown street, a typical local restaurant was opened. I can immediately recognize this type of restaurant, and I knew they probably provided good local food, when you saw much local people were happily eating. It only opened from morning until afternoon, with limited amount of its signature dishes served through. One of them was pork leg braised in sweat dark sauce. The cooking way was perfect demonstration of mixed influence from north, Myanmar and China.

The most unforgettable Khao Kha Moo was from our trip in Chiang Mai. Outside the white elephant gate (Chang Pauk), we were busy with our temple tour and sightseeing in the burning afternoon. Street food vendors were gradually to set their equipment for the coming night. After first night ended up in a touristic restaurant, even the food was ok. We decided back to Chang Pauk street food block, where the food heart was located. Cowboy lady was just standing there holding two giant knifes, cutting the pork leg meat. The meat was just so tender, as falling so easily from the bone. I had heart this lady somewhere, and her stall was named in Chinese “Feng Fei Fei”, probably after the ever famous Chinese singer. Big plate pork leg meat was braised so juice and tender. The fattiness was completely faded away, only the sweetness and aroma from cooked mixed herbs and pork meat.

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Khao man kai (Hainanese chicken rice) 

As a Chinese style white chicken originally from Hainan, 1423361863398Hainanese chicken rice is a partial dish with migration culture in south-east Asian. Chicken meat is off-white, and skin must be slightly golden after boiling in stock. Sauce and rice are prepared different from other south-east countries, which are also having Hainanese chicken rice.

We were wondering in the phuket old town. Still busy old town was surrounded by hundred years old sino-portuguese buildings, where I even felt a bit sentimental because of its ever history and familiar everywhere characters. I had been thinking go back to the local restaurant, where the half Hainanese taxi driver suggested. Around the corner, with few tables set on the street, simple and popular food was served. Two ladies were helping out and cleaning. In the stall, only chicken, cha shao and few other things hanging, I just cannot resist the clear and light chicken rice with refreshing dipping. Here they were. Plastics plate like elsewhere, placed a good portion rice and fine sliced chicken, a bit dark sauce and few sliced cucumber. In the following, we probably just encountered one of perfect kaho man kai. I tried the prepared chili fermented bean (I guess) sauce set in a big jar. It was just tasted so incredible, yet spicy. I can barely stop, and eventually we had extra more chicken.


Sweat and fruity

Feb 2015 196In the contrast spicy everywhere in Thailand, it is just so easy to find sweat or fruity sweat. The very first sweat will be the fresh coconut water. I love the lightness and freshness of the coconut water, and it is so easy to get. I can drink in anytime and every day, and I have no idea how many of them have been consumed during my stay. Pity, I could not get the coconut meat inside.Only if you love coconut related all, then you will be in the heaven. Because, the following sweat which you can super easily get everywhere through north to south in any occasion (fortunately, I have tried all), nothing is without coconut product:

  • khao neaw ma muang (coconut milk sticky rich with mango)
  • Sago coconut milk with black bean
  • Sago coconut milk with fresh mango
  • Kluay buat chee (Bananas in coconut milk with)
  • Khanom Krom (coconut rice pancakes)
  • Khao tom mud (coconut milk cooked sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves)
  • Coconut milk and meat sorbet
  • Toasted banana with coconut sugar dipping
  • Any combination of coconut milk and beans, rice, sweat potatoes, taro and etc

As the big lover of coconut, I call coconut the king of south Asian sweat. Does not matter with what, how could it go wrong? For those without coconut, you can have Khao Lam (sticky rice in bamboo), any type of fresh made fruit juice, banana roti, Durian cake, pandan leave cake….

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(p.s. All photos were made by Leee, during the trip in Thailand Feb 2015.)

Continue to read  Thai flavor on the way – 2 

                             Thai fast through my camera

you can also check this nice Migrationology website for more Thai tips