Food is one of the most exciting parts when it comes to traveling. Doing a local food crawl is definitely one of the must-dos. Located southeast of Asia, we are here in this mythical destination, Cambodia. Like the country, Cambodian cuisine is fascinating. MyProGuide has summarized what to know about Cambodia food and what to eat!
First thing first: what to expect for Cambodian food?
With a fertile coastline, fish is often a staple food in Cambodia. Cambodian food often features fish and rice on the menus of local restaurants. Sharing similarities to that of its neighbors Thailand and Vietnam, where are also famous for its contrast flavors, and plenty, plenty of herbs, and leaves.
Top 5 Cambodia Dishes That You Can’t-Miss Out On
1. Fish Amok
For those curry lovers, be sure to try Fish amok. Mostly made with fish, but can also be made with chicken or beef, this classic dish is rich and creamy curry sauce that is said to be the most popular Cambodian dish. Served and wrapped in a banana leaf, the iconic look and flavorful taste make fish amok the national dish of Cambodia.
You might also like Traveling in South Asia: Your Ultimate Packing Guide
2. Banana Blossom Salad
Almost seen everywhere in restaurants all over Cambodia, this refreshing salad can be enjoyed at any time during the day. Banana blossom is stir-fried and is topped with chopped garlic, and flavorful lemongrass.
3. Lap Khmer (Lime-marinated Khmer beef salad)
Featuring thin slices of beef which marinated in fresh lime juice with lots of garlic, fish sauce, basil, bell peppers and. It is then finally topped with lots of chilies. Be careful, it might be really spicy and comes with a strong kick!
Customize your Tour HERE
4. Nhoim Troyong Chiek (Chicken and banana flower salad)
A typical salad of Khmer people in Cambodia, it is a colorful dish with a refreshing and light taste. During a dazzling summer, you surely need to have a bowl of Nhoim Troyong Chiek. This dish is made of tender slices of chicken breast, served with crunchy banana blossom flower, garlic, herbs, garlic, spicy chilies, and lemongrass, finishing up with fresh lime juice.
5. Beef loc lac
Inspired by French cuisine, Beef loc lac has its roots from Vietnamese cuisine. Yet, beef loc lac is popular among Cambodians. This mouth-watering dish consists of stir-fried tender beef, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, and onions. Finally, it is served in a bowl of juicy lettuce leaves. Not only does the delicious meat make it an amazing dish, but the fresh and fruity dipping sauce of lime juice and pepper coming along also brings out all the flavor.
Go on a mouth-watering Street food tour
Street food is quite a culture in Cambodia. Counting down the top street food in Cambodia, before starting on a feast? Here are some markets that are known for their food, don’t miss out!
Phnom Penh Night Market: Preah Sisowath Quay, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Jet’s Container Night Market: National Assembly Street, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
phsar leu thom thmey: NR6, Krong Siem Reap 17252, Cambodia
1. Grilled pork on skewers
The concept of skewers is popular almost everywhere around the world. While walking down the markets in Cambodia, you might be drawn by the mouthwatering aromas of these skewers. Most of the time, grilled skewers are sold in carts. Served with pickled veggies with together with rice, they are loaded with herbs and condiments. Try some to enjoy an authentic Cambodian style BBQ.
2. Lort Cha(stir-fried noodles)
Made of thick rice noodles, various vegetables such as spring onions, chives, beans, this dish then is mixed with beef and topped off with an egg in the end. This is the perfect lunch or dinner to have while roaming around the streets in Cambodia. To spot a Lort Cha, find vendors with their big frying pans and a wide collection of ingredients. It is always fun to see how the food is prepared.
4. Kdam Chaa (Fried Crab)
As Cambodian famous for its abundant fresh seafood, this makes its fried crab (Kdam Chaa in Khmer) a must eat. Traditionally, Kdam Chaa is served with sweet and spicy sauce. Yet, make sure to also try it with green peppercorns.
5. Chive Cake(Nom Ka Chai)
With the Chinese Influence, chive cake is a typical street food in southeast Asia. Yet the Cambodians have their own twist, this savory bun is served with spicy fish sauce. Usually, they are sold on bicycles, it is common and popular everywhere in Cambodia.
You might also be interested in Where Should I Plan My Next Family Vacation? | 7 Places to Escape the Ordinary Family Vacation Destinations
6. Num Pang: Typical Cambodian Sandwich
You might have already seen this before this similar Vietnamese ingredient in Cambodia: the baguette. Influenced by the French colonization, Cambodia named it Num pang. It is mostly meaty, served with the ingredients such as pate, ham or pork and come along with cucumber, carrots, chives, and onions to balance the greasy taste.
7. Coconut Ice Cream
Time for dessert! Try Cambodian coconut ice-cream after a nice dinner. Usually served in an iconic coconut bowl, it is topped with delicious sweet corn and coconut meat depending on your preference.
8. Cambodia iced coffee.
Can’t begin your day without a cup of coffee? Well, same for the Cambodians, a day doesn’t start without a cup of fine iced coffee, which is gah-fay dteuk-gork in Khmer. This sweet, strong, refreshing drink has become one of the essentials for the Cambodians’ daily life. The beverage sometimes comes in a plastic cup or in a plastic bag with a straw inside.
Before you go, see also Do I Need a Tour Guide? 10 Things to Consider Before Making a Decision
Whether you are a food lover or not, Cambodian food will turn you into a foodie! Apart from the mythical, charming paradise attractions in Cambodia, food is surely the key to enjoy this beautiful country thoroughly. Don’t forget to enjoy the amazing food! Let’s dig in!