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Back in Action, Lao Food

[Note: edited at 4:30 pm, Monday, Yeosu time.]

Wow, looking back at my archives, it appears that this is the longest time I have gone between posts; I’ll definitely try to be more diligent in the future.

Obviously, I’m back in Yeosu, suffering through the Korean winter. Located high on a hill, the university gets more than its share of wind, and when the temperature drops below freezing, it feels more like zero (fahrenheit). It reminds me very much of Montana winters, sans the snow. I wish I were back in Laos again, where, for the most part, the weather was perfect–sunny days and mild nights, with temperatures in the 80s and mostly low humidity. I’d never been in Laos this time of year and I was surprised at the number of other tourists visiting the country. It’s high season during December, January and February, and Vientiane and Vang Vieng were packed, relatively speaking. I made a quick trip into Nong Khai, Thailand, and coming back through Laos immigration took around and hour, much longer than it normally takes. I’ll write more about the trip in later posts.

I’ve been going through the pictures I took while I was on vacation, trying to decide which ones to post here. This first group will be food related, for no particular reason than that they seemed to stand out more than the others.

Many Lao people still cook in the traditional way, over an open fire, mainly because they can’t afford a gas or propane stove. The smell of burning wood brings back memories of many Montana campfires. Here’s the main “stove” at Nai’s family’s house.

Cook-Fire_2-w

Yep, a one-burner fire. Almost all the cooked food is prepared here, the day’s rice, fish, meat, chicken and whatever. Below are the simmering ingredients for “noodle soup chicken,” as Nai calls it. When the veggies and chicken are done, you add some water and precooked noodles, simmer for a while, and eat.

Cook-Fire_1-w

So, what is my favorite Lao food? I’m glad you asked. It’s just plain ol’ fish, barbecue style, stuffed with lemon grass (I think), fresh from the Mekong. I could eat these beauties all day long.

Fish-w

Ok, since I’m writing this early on Monday morning, I find that I’m running out of time and I must go to work soon. Check back tomorrow for more on Lao food.

P.S. As promised, I posted a photo of the Hanoi Noi Bai airport restaurant on the previous entry.

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