After spending the cool morning exploring the town of Luang Prabang, Laos, my BFF and I went to Bamboo Tree that's famous for its cooking classes. We didn't have the chance to experience that, but we were satisfied with the meal offered at the restaurant.
Such a nice presentation of the food, no?
While waiting for our order to come, we were offered crispy banana chips and crunchy peanuts with shallots. The interplay between the sweetness of the former and the salty taste of the latter whetted my appetite.
Breaded Squids with Chili Lime Sauce LAK 40,000 (~S$6.90)
A delight to have as an appetiser dish, the lightly breaded squid chunks were crispy on the outside and moist inside. They went well with the nasty-looking chili, which was apparently not that spicy, but flavourful. Also, as they were deep-fried with kaffir lime leaves and garlic, the dish exuded a heady aroma.
Luang Prabang Chicken Stew LAK 55,000 (~S$9.50)
The visually impressive main course featured a bowl of hearty chicken stew, which broth was enjoyably thick. The clean chicken slices were swimming with eggplants, flavoured with various herbs and topped with dill. The accompanying purple sticky rice was fulfilling.
Fried Prawns with Lemongrass Sauce LAK 60,000 (~S$10.40)
The slightly more expensive main course turned out to be less gratifying. Although the dish was aromatic, thanks to the amount of chopped lemongrass used, I found that the gravy was a tad too salty to be eaten on its own. The prawns, or rather shrimps, were succulent nonetheless.
Bananas and Pineapples in Coconut Milk LAK 25,000 (~S$2.65)
Those familiar with kolak pisang, an Indonesian sweet dish of sliced bananas and other ingredients in coconut milk and palm sugar, should be able to easily identify with this particular dessert item. It was my virgin experience with pineapples in such a concoction, and it turned out to be a satisfying one. The sour note from the pineapples balanced out the sweetness of the bananas. I couldn't stop drinking the soup till the last drop.
Given the chance to go back to Luang Prabang in the future, I'd certainly love to attend the cooking class. Pika's advice: There's an item called Secret Soup on the menu. Priced at LAK 25,000 (~S$3.70), it's something that your adventurous soul may want to try out.
Bamboo Tree Lao Cooking School and Restaurant
(Daily: 9.00am - 11.30pm)
*Prices quoted are nett prices.
Have a nice meal,