Another food adventure...
01.25.2008 - 01.25.2008 93 °F
Early Friday morning, on my friend's advice, I went to Aw Taw Kaw market, where the "best" food is sold. I had to find out what the meant (and tasted like). It was explained to me briefly as an up-scale outdoor food market where all the finest, biggest and most beautiful produce was sold.
I wandered out of the underground metro to see a large tented areas with tons of tables. There was definitely a lot of produce and it all looked quite good. But which to try? Then I spotted it. It looked like durian, but when I asked if it was a lady shook her head and said something in Thai. (Not many people spoke English, but I managed...) I found out later it was jack fruit. The man selling it was cutting the large fruit open to reveal smaller orange pods of flesh surrounding a seed. He would separate the pods, remove the seeds and serve them on a plate.
You can see the whole jackfruit on a stand in the background.
Next up were two young guys using a hot cooking stove with three little platforms. On each platform, they would smooth on a little bit of batter and cover it with a little conical lid. Then after a while they would put on a bit of dark filling and wrap the half-cooked batter around it. I got a tray full of the little dumplings and they added some garnishes like chilis, fried garlic bits, coriander and lettuce.
A little bit further, I saw a man making little cups of something very white. The bottoms of the cups were golden brown and crispy and the top was soft and still wet. On some of the cups, he would throw some chives. He pointed and said "Coconut," and I got half a tray of chive and half of plain.
Still not satisfied with my brunch, I looked for one more item. When I saw a lady behind a pile of raw oysters and mussels, I knew I had to have whatever she was cooking. It ended up being a sort of egg scramble. There was a bit of batter fried with eggs, oysters and mussels. It was served with a sweet chili sauce.
My whole meal, assembled together.
The egg scramble was my favorite, the sweet chili sauce made it so different than the kind of egg dish I'm used to. Then the little dumplings were sweet and salty inside (I learned later that its roasted coconut and peanuts). I tried it first plain and then with all the garnishes, which was much tastier. Then the jackfruit was very interesting. With the lingering sweet pungency of durian, the slight tropical flavor somewhat like papaya, but a firm, dry, slightly starchy texture and mouthfeel. I liked the coconut cups, especially with the saltiness of the chive topping. I couldn't eat it all, so I took some back to the hotel as a late night snack.
(It still tasted good cold, by the way.) Happy eating!