Saa moo, minced pork tossed with the diced heart of the...
LUANG PRABANG, LAOS - 2014/09/14: Saa moo, minced pork tossed with the diced heart of the banana flower, shallot and mint, at 3 Nagas Restaurant. Luang Prabang is well known for its charms, but the towns culinary delights are a little less familiar. Heavy in herbs and tree barks foraged from the surrounding jungle, a handful of foreign ingredients- dill, tomatoes and chilli, which are thought to have arrived with a Dutch trader in the 16th century, age old cooking techniques using charcoal and wood fuelled earthen fires, then refined with the attention and pizazz fitting for the food of a royal court, Luang Prabang has a cuisine as unique and distinct in style and flavour as the quaint streets supporting it. Falling into relative obscurity after the communist revolution of the 1970s, when the courts were abolished and aristocratic populations sent into exile, Luang Prabangs culinary heritage had all but disappeared when the town was awarded World Heritage listing in 1995 for its architecture and tourists started to arrive. Over the years Luang Prabangs indigenous cuisine started to re-emerge, fighting its way through a sea of Thai, Vietnamese and French foods that had surfaced to cater to the tourist crowd. It was brought back to the menus by a clutch of chefs whose families fled overseas with the onset of the communist revolution, or by locals intrigued by the dishes of Phia Sing, the former cook and master of ceremonies for the royal court, whose recipe notebooks were translated and published by British diplomat Alan Davidson. (Photo by Leisa Tyler/LightRocket via Getty Images)
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Leisa Tyler / Contributor
14 September, 2014
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