9 July 2010
Day 2 – Luang Prabang
We started the day at 5am by going to see the monks giving alms. It is very picturesque with the beautiful morning light and it was something we just had to see, despite it now being very popular with tourists.
We then went to the early morning market, which I absolutely loved. The mood of the market is very laid back and very exotic things are for sell from the surrounding areas.
Ghislain shot over 500 pictures from the market alone. I think that says it all. But, being me, I was always on his back saying ‘Did you take a picture of that?’ ‘Did you take a picture of this?’ and of course he had. I do hope I will not get on his nerves…
After the morning market we ended up eating the very famous Luang Prabang dish Kao Soi which in not at all related to northern Thai dish with the same name but it is equally delicious. It is a simple bowl of noodles with beef or pork, tomatoes and herbs (and lots of mint which I love)
With Ket, I then started to contact people who specialize in local food and are working with indigenous people. We were told to go and visit the Traditional Arts and Ethnology centre. The restaurant there has a special exhibit all about ethnic Lao food.
We then met Mr Jannik, who was responsible for the exhibition. He took us to the restaurant attached to the center called The Coconut Garden, which was just lovely.
This restaurant specializes in Lao food and he let us go into the kitchen and watch the chefs and him cooking four dishes for us. He has kindly allowed us to use the recipes in our cook book!
Needless to say that dishes were incredibly delicious. We really enjoyed seeing his passion for Lao food and we are so impressed how helpful everyone has been on our search for real Lao food.
For lunch we met Caroline, who runs the famous Tamarind restaurant with her Lao husband. Caroline also gave us lots of tips about the local food and how to eat it. We are lucky enough to be going to a Sunday morning a cooking session with her husband at their cooking school.While we were there, we had a sample platter of very delicious dishes and we are all further convinced the world needs to find out about Lao cuisine.
Later that afternoon, we went to see some of the incredible temples around Luang Prabang which are just magical.
We needed to get more information on how to contact the ethnic minorities in the area and we ended up in this nice travel agency. The owner was incredibly helpful and gave us great advice.
He contacted the village chief for us and it was decided that tomorrow we are going to cook 6 dishes with three different hill tribes in their villages.
We are of course extremely excited about this and I cant wait for tomorrow to come.
We celebrated this we a couple of Beer Lao and went off to bed.
I think Sebastien saying that I have a good job is wrong. I have a great job!!!