Eating Kao Soi on Kao Soi Street, Chiang Mai

By | November 18, 2013

by Robert Danhi
(Los Angeles, CA, USA)

From my book Southeast Asian Flavors

From my book Southeast Asian Flavors

Headnote from my recipe in the book:

Thai mastery of complex flavors and textures finds its best showcase in this dish of resilient wheat noodles floating in rich scented coconut broth garnished with more crispy noodles.

Thailand shares more than just a border with Myanmar (Burma). The nations have borrowed from each other in the evolution of dishes such as Kao Soi. Believed to be a hybrid of the Burmese word “khauk-hswe,” which translates as “noodles,” it also shows influences from Chinese style.

A rich, coconut milk-based curry gravy bathes resilient flat noodles, pieces of chicken and a fascinating combination of raw shallots, cilantro, crispy fried noodles and pickled mustard greens. The pickled greens hail from China where they’re essential to Chinese-Muslim cookery.

A raw wedge of lime provides a final Thai touch to Kao Soi, squeezed in by the diner at the very last moment before he delves onto this textural culinary adventure.

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