Khmer Food: Steamed Fish with Lemongrass and Galangal in Spicy Lime Sauce

Steamed fish. Fried fish. I hate Fish. During my childhood, I avoided fish (stewed, fried or steamed fish) like Cookie avoided jalapeno peppers. When she’s being a pest like ripping up toilet papers, I would hold a freshly broken jalapeno pepper in front of her and she would back away quickly. The sides of her lips quirking up in disgust. The exact same reaction I unconsciously make every time I see my mother cleaning and chopping fishes to make our dinner. And every time I tell my mother I don’t like fish, she always says. “Don’t worry, your taste will …

How to Make Cambodian Lime and Fish Soup (Sgnor Trey)

Khmer history is written in our food. Our ingredients. Many of our dishes are similar to our South-east Asian neighbours, adapted to our taste. Curry spices such as turmeric and star anise came from India, stir-frying came from the Chinese culture, and the use of banquette, and fondness for tenderizing meat with lime juice show traces of French cuisine from the time when Cambodia was a part of French Indochina. Khmer food, and food recipes were varied and abundant. However, during the Khmer Rouge atrocity from 1975 – 1979, Khmer food culture, took a crippling blow. During those brutal years of …

How to Make Num Banh Chok

While staying with my mother in Cambodia for a few months, I’ve learned to appreciate one of her favorite Cambodian food, a traditional breakfast called nom banh chok –rice noodle served with fish gravy and freshly foraged wild grown Cambodian vegetables (some of which does not have an English name), eaten with a few chilli peppers on the side. Like all our morning breakfast in Cambodia, it’s served at room temperature, in a plastic bag, delivered to our house. No, we did not make the call for delivery. Every morning, our local vendor would take her bike, filled her basket to the …

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