20050120

thai bites at the chamorro village

i went to the chamorro village last night, and came across a new (for me, anyway) vendor selling mostly drinks, but also a couple of thai food items.


kanom tom

i picked up a little box of kanom tom--mochi/glutinous rice filled with a sort of brown sugared/caramelized coconut, and rolled in freshly grated coconut--and saku sai mu, balls of pork cooked with garlic and peanuts then covered in tiny tapioca pearls. the kanom tom is very similar to the filipino palitaw, but in a much more manageable size and with the interesting filling. it wasn't very sweet, the mochi was tender, and the coconut very fresh--oozing of coconut milk.



i had never had saku sai mu before, but it looked lovely--little pearly translucent balls nestled in their container like jewels, and served with lettuce, long stalks of cilantro, and the tiniest of boonie peppers (thai bird chiles). they hold an explosion of flavour in their tiny two-bite core; the finely diced pork is sautéed with cilantro, minced garlic, minced onion, palm sugar, and fish sauce. the flavour is sweet, salty, spicy and savoury all in one.


saku sai mu

it's a shame that most people just come to his table to buy beverages because these were interesting additions to the standard village fare. next time i'm there, i will definitely check to see if he's got other treats, because these were gems.

7 comments:

Oh, didn't know this is called kanom tom in Thailand. Kekeke... but I love this... used to eat this once a week during my high school time. :P

I'm familiar with the kanom but the saku sai mu is new to me. Interesting ....

hi fish fish--lucky you! i could have easily finished off the whole box.

hey fatman--new to me too. i've been thinking of the perfect word to describe the pork center, and the closest i can come to is "pungent". good thing it's just a couple of bites big. i like how it's wrapped in tiny tapioca pearls. looks like spawn.

saw some dried persimmons in the Korean market. got some. never had them before. wonderful taste (the fresh kind is a staple at home and we eat them like apples).

so i made sujonggwa based on yours. my gosh, that's one awesome punch. gingery, cinnammony, persimmonny punch. but i couldn't taste the pine nuts in the punch even after 36 hours. true? or do you only get the taste when you eat them?

hi purplegirl! authentic sujonggwa is rather less forceful--not quite delicate, but probably a better balance of flavours. i'm so over subtle at the moment, i want something that will hit me over the head :-) the pine nuts are a better balance in an authentic recipes, but an interesting bit of texture in mine. i like the dried persimmon rehydrated though.

santos!

those thai pungent porky treats look fabulous. my mom used to make me pearl meatballs for my school lunchbox -- chinese pork meatballs covered with glutinous rice and steamed. and last night i was re-reading gourmet's march 2004 new york issue, and there was a recipe for these pearl meatballs, as well as one for negamaki, like your miso-mustard beef rolls, only theirs had blanched scallions in the middle. i thought of you! anyway, my friend laura and i are going to new york for a weekend in march to celebrate turning 30, sans kiddies, so we are plotting...

love your photos and especially love your evil cackle.

best,
hailyn

hi hailyn!

so funny, i was just thinking of you, too, as pinch, dom and i are going back to firefly tonight--we'll do a toast (or more like a honkin' large crepe) in your honour. new york! green bananas green with envy. where are you staying/what are you doing/where are you eating? :-D i'll email you soon.