Saturday, October 27, 2007

Laap Nua (Daeng Daeng!)

Somewhere on Highway 108 between Mae Sariang and Hot, lunch time arrived and we were presented with three choices: noodles, generic stir fry, or maybe som tam and grilled meat. We chose the latter. We rolled up and I asked if there was any Som Tam. No dice. I was informed there was in fact laap (a meat "salad"), which I quickly ordered with pork. All they had was beef. No problem. The next question took me by suprise. "Sook or daeng daeng?" E, may partner in crime, answered "daeng daeng" to my suprise. I concurred. At the table awaiting our food, I expressed my suprise that she would willingly order what I though would be a plate of raw and bloody beef. We were not let down.

I don't have many food aversions and I'm open to eat just about anything. Although I approached this beast with an open mind, I did have my doubts. I reminded myself that rare beef tends to be better than the cooked version, so the texture might be pleasing. One bite later I had a new least favorite dish. As I had thought, the texture wasn't bad at all, but that wasn't really the problem. Whatever they seasoned this here beauty with was overwhelmingly bitter. I think it was some kind of green, but I can't really be sure. The serving was looking bigger by the moment. Luckiily we were hungry, and we had ordered some more food.

The good news was that their nam tok moo (Namtok: waterfall. moo: pork) was excellent. Nam tok, or waterfall, refers to the dish being prepared with the drippings that are caught during the grilling process. I don't know if every establishment does this anymore. Nam Tok is seasoned with lime, chili, onions, rice, fish sauce, cilantro, and other herbs.

We rounded out the meal with sticky rice and this here generous plate of greens. Lovely.

I was in fact able to finish all of the laap nua. Here's a shot that shows just how bloody it was.


Anonymous said...

If this "raw and bloody" meat is your new "least favorite" dish why did you eat ALL of it?

a said...

A sense of responsibility. What would you have me do, just throw it away?

Jan L. said...

Hi Aaron,
Oh my gosh....raw beef and jumping live shrimp! Our food here in the States sure looks boring compared to what you're eating. I can't wait to see what's next.

Ward Tongen said...


Great post. I'm now going to be a regular reader.

Thanks for the Korean food tour in BKK as well.