Cambodian Street Food: Part 2
So, you’ve jumped into Cambodian street food. You’ve tried a sandwich or some noodles perhaps some snails, well let’s dive a bit deeper and see what other eats, perhaps a little more exotic flavours, are on the menu.
Bai Sach Chrouk
This breakfast special is easily spotted. Just look for the places grilling pork in the morning. The smoky grills are usually surrounded by people planning for a sit-in meal or a takeaway. These places open early and typically finish once the morning crowd has moved on.
Pork rice, or Bai Sach Chrouk, is a simple dish of thinly sliced, charcoal-grilled pork (sach chrouk) served with rice, pickled vegetables and a soup. Most vendors will include a spicy sauce with garlic. If you sit down at the vendor’s venue for a meal then there will be bottomless cups of tea, a broth, and spices and sauces to enjoy this local favourite.
A pork rice will set you back as little as 4,000 riels. Not a bad way to start the day.
Bobor Sach Trey/Borbor Sach Mouan
Another breakfast food is fish or chicken congee. If you’re feeling under the weather, this dish is believed to do wonders for the immune system.
This full, balanced meal will cost you just 4,000 to 5,000 riels in markets. Bobor, or rice porridge, is a national institution.
When you order your Bobor with either fish or chicken, the meat will be shredded into the bowl before the vendor adds porridge. Normally you should get a couple of cubes of congealed pork blood in the porridge as well as thin-sliced root ginger, bean sprouts and a squeeze of lime.
If you choose to sit in, then the table condiments are there. Try adding fermented cabbage to the porridge, and of course lashings of ground black pepper.
Usually on the table are long, straight oily bread sticks for this dish. They are called Chakquai and are a light, airy batter that has been deep-fried. Dip one into the porridge, and they become soft and tasty. Not bad at all!
A quick mention of some other breakfast treats. There are also several other options such as chicken leg, or Bai Sait Moan. You can also order rice with fried duck egg, known locally as Bai Sait J’ruuk Nang Pohng Tia Jien, And, there is fried rice, Bai Chaa, and fried noodles, Mee Chaa.
If you order fried noodles, there are two kinds: one is the inferior instant kind named after a brand called mee Mama, but the better kind is Mee Dm, which is a long, fresh, yellow noodle.
Nhoim Troyong Chiet
Cambodian banana flower salad includes the tasty banana flower, or Nhoim Troyong Cheit, accompanied by loads of fresh herbs, chopped vegetables, chopped nuts, lemon, and a light sweet-salty-spicy-sour dressing. Of course, it has fish sauce. The salad includes many wonderful flavours. It is crispy and fresh. This dish can also be prepared with pork or chicken depending on your preference. However, it can also be just the thing if you’re trying to lay off the meat.
Whatever it is, Nhoim Troyong Cheit is an incredibly refreshing and quite a festival to eat.
The salad is available at markets. Typically, the price for one salad starts at 7,000 riels.
Cambodian street food BBQ is quite common and popular. At dusk, vendors appear near markets and on busy streets, grilling various dishes.
For seafood BBQ then grilled squid, Ang Dtray-meuk, served with chili sauce is a tasty choice.
Grilled squid is a popular street snack. It is prepared with lime juice or fish sauce before being grilled or skewered and served with a local sauce made of garlic, fresh chilies, fish sauce, lime juice and sugar.
Grilled squid can be found at many street vendors or walk around any of the local markets. These street vendors also set up shop after the markets have closed.
Khmers like their pork. The locals especially like to use it when making sweet Khmer sausages known as Kwah Ko. On street carts around local markets and on the streets, you will find vendors with different kinds of pork sausages hanging off their carts; very easy to spot.
The sausages are sold either on skewers or as small sausage balls. Their red colour makes them easy to identify in your search for these tasty snacks. The taste is special as the sausages are very sweet and quite fatty. In fact, the sausages are made with palm sugar and consist of half pork and half fat.
Locals enjoy them a lot and like to eat them with a cold beer.
Expect to pay about 500 riels for one sausage. Be careful not to overdo it as these tasty morsels are addictive.
This is a classic Cambodian noodle soup featuring a complex beef or chicken bone broth, vermicelli noodles, and slices of meat and/or meat balls. Kuy Teav can also be found at markets. This dish starts at 4,000 riels.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of Cambodian Street Food It is literally the author stumbling on a street vendor when out and about looking for a meal. Nonetheless, this list is a good start. Begin with some of these then explore further and start to enjoy the wonders of Cambodian cuisine. And remember, if you utter the words Knyom Khleam, you’ll be ushered to the nearest street stall.
Cambodian Street Food
Streeet food is not to be missed. Be you a volunteer, working for a charity, adventure traveler or on an organised tour; have a meel on the streets of PP or SR. If you want some ore information about anything; drop us a message.