Monday, December 01, 2008

Street Food Part 1

I took these photos during the water festival here in Siem Reap. This one is grilled skewered meat, what we call "satay" in Singapore. In Cambodia, the meat is sweetened with sugar and spices.
Grilled cuttlefish or squid, which I bought once for 5000 riels. It's chewy. In Singapore, we used to eat Ken Ken Cuttlefish, small packets of grilled cuttlefish from Japan. On the packet was the slogan "The Chewing Gum of the East", that's how chewy it is! The little balls on a string are Cambodian sausages. I've never tried it--I'm scared of sausages in general, and of Cambodian ones in particular!
These are grilled small birds. I think they're pigeon, but I am not sure. They could be sparrows--one of our neighbours used to deep-fry sparrows when I was a child in Singapore.
The wee birds are coated in the same red colour as the chicken wings shown in this next pic. Chicken wings are my favourite. The wings are tiny, with hardly any meat, but I love the taste nonetheless. Alan is always amazed I can eat chicken wings. In the West, he says, wings are thrown away, because there's no meat on them. We Asians love them--grilled to a crisp and coated with Asian-style BBQ sauce. Yum! The Cambodians are champions at eating chicken wings--absolutely nothing is left, they even eat the bones!
The Cambodian "bao" (literally "wrap" in Mandarin) or meat-filled bun. They are very popular back home, and you can get bao anywhere, even at the 7-Eleven, where you can microwave it so it's warm. Here, they are sold by mobile hawkers. Mom and I tried it once, but the meat was a bit dodgy for us. I like char siew bao (sweet BBQ pork meat bun) especially but you can't get it here, except frozen ones from Thailand, which they sell at the supermarkets.
"pong moawn ang" or grilled chicken eggs. These are mixed with salt and pepper and grilled. They are delicious and nutritious. All of us at Bloom used to eat them as afternoon snack all the time. It cost only 500 riels (0.125 US cents) back then. I'm sure it is more now, since raw eggs cost 400 riels (10 cents) each at the market now.

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