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Feb 23, 2010 01:30 AM

Need help for laos recipes

hi guys im a high school student and i need help to find recipes for my background culture which is laos , im looking for recipes in the entree and mains category i would appreciate the help please help ! :(

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  1. Sam's laab (from a farm family in Savannakhet)

    Very briefly blanch a mix of chopped (can also be coarsely ground) beef and pork in boiling water and drain. Cook finely diced tripe and add to meat when ready. Dress with ample - and to taste - lime juice & fish sauce. Mix in finely chopped green onion, chopped mint, chopped cilantro, chiles, ground toasted (uncooked) rice, and a diced red onion. Mix and let sit for at least half an hour. At serving top with torn mint and cilantro, more ground toasted rice, and some sliced red chile.

    Serve with a platter of greens: cabbage(s), lettuce(s), long green beans (raw or lightly steamed), and more mint and cilantro. Include newly emerged leaves of coffee and mango if you live where those are available. Serve with plenty of khao niyao.

    1. Here's a search here on the home cooking board that yields a ton of hits for recipes from Laos.

      Here are some other links that might interest you:

      Good luck with your project. Are you going to cook some of these? Let us know how it goes!


      1. Lao Salad with Egg Dressing (aka Luang Prabang salad):

        Duck Larb:

        The following site has many awesome Lao dishes that are rare to find in the states:

        Good luck with your project!

        11 Replies
        1. re: yummyrice

          thanks yummyrice may i ask another question since you know a fair bit about laos, sorry for nagging you XD but i also need to know the table setting for laos for example what is the table setting for a birthday function like how are the foods served and placed , if you have any information can you please tell me :D but if not its okay , thanks for the recipes again

          1. re: khonlao

            Sorry that I'm not yummyrice, but maybe he can confirm for you if need be. For most party-like get-togethers, all the food is served on a multitude of platters and dishes and bowls placed on a low round, bamboo "table". People - sitting on the floor on mats and around the table - each have their basket of khao niyao; and use their hands and rice as implements; and each takes small bits of food from the center to make bites consisting of rice and food. Unsweetened tea is the most common drink with the meal. Each person also uses a small ball of sticky rice as a hand cleaner at the end of the meal.

            1. re: Sam Fujisaka

              thanks sam fujisaka appreciate it heaps ! :)

              1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                Yes, you can either sit on the floor around a Lao rattan serving platform called a katoke or use regular chairs and eat on a dining table.


                Dishes served on katoke:

                Dishes served on katoke 2:

                Dishes served on katoke 3:

                Ethnic children in Laos eating on a katoke:

                Lao birthday:

                Lao birthday 2:

                Lao feast utilizing multiple katokes:

                1. re: yummyrice

                  Most of my meals of that type were in poor rural areas where the katoke was made of bamboo rather than rattan; and there were never any regular chairs or metal western eating utensils anywhere.

                  1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                    Yeah, I kind of suspected that. I'm sure you had some very interesting experiences in the poor rural areas. Do you have any photos to share with us?

                    Khonlao, I shared those photos with you so that you would have at least some kind of idea as to how the foods are arranged on the katoke.

                    Here's another photo (minus the katoke):

                    1. re: yummyrice

                      hey yummyrice sorry for nagging you but i just found out i need recipes for baked goods from laos, would you happen to know any or know where to find any recipes, thanks heaps!

                      1. re: khonlao

                        Sabaidee khonlao,

                        baking is most definitely an uncommon style of cooking in most of South east Asia. The few places that do bake tend to have adopted this aspect from a period of colonisation.

                        I honestly can't recall a baked traditional Lao dish

                        The use of a Dutch oven type receptacle would be the closest generally to baking and really is then a slow crockpot style.

                        Many of the Awlams are prepared this way.
                        I'm sure the reasons that baking hasn't developed as a signifiacnt style is due to the ingredients them selves. Most of the meats are cut into small bite sized pieces and can be consumed immediately they're cooked. The climate is hot and storage of baked quantities would be a problem without refrigeration.

                        Since the period of the French protecting Laos, the bread stick and baguette has become very popular and this is of course baked but as I mentioned an introduced style.

                        There's another point not related to cooking style but almost a unique aspect of Lao recipes and that's the flavours.

                        Thai, Cambodian, Burma, Vietnam all focus on the balance of four major flavours being "Hot, Sweet, Sour and Spicy". In Lao there is another flavour added and is really responsible for something I call the earthy character of Lao food and that's the "Bitter" factor. Certainly there are recipes in the other cuisines I mentioned with the bitter factor apparent but in Lao Cuisine it's almost ubiquitous especially in peasant cuisine less so in Royal cuisine.

                        Sok dii

                        1. re: ediblyasian

                          Yes, Lao cuisine has hot, sweet, sour, and spicy, but also a bitter element. But most Lao dishes aren't bitter. Only certain ones are made bitter because some people believe that eating bitter foods is good for your health. So the bitter factor is actually an optional element that is added in when requested. That's why when you order beef Laap/Larb, they'll usually ask you if you want it to be bitter, because it's an acquired taste that some Lao people prefer, but it's not for everyone.

                          So that bitter factor is not a standard element in Lao cuisine, but more like an "option" that is readily available to those who ask for it.

                          Khonlao, I'll find some recipes to post for you.

                          1. re: yummyrice

                            Oops. I meant to say salty rather than sweet. Usually our desserts are made sweet, but not our main dishes. Our dishes tend to be on the saltier side because we tend to eat them with Lao sticky rice. They balance each other out.

                        2. re: khonlao

                          >>hey yummyrice sorry for nagging you but i just found out i need recipes for baked goods from laos, would you happen to know any or know where to find any recipes, thanks heaps!

                          Lao cuisine has several baked goods, but it''s so hard finding Lao recipes on the internet. I wish more Lao cooks and chefs would share their recipes online.

                          Anyway, here's a quick Lao recipe (w/ a video) for you to use for now.

                          Lao Purple Rice Custard Dessert (Khao Sung Ga Ya):

                          ^ The author decided to use a custard mix, but traditionally the custard is made from scratch.

            2. Not sure which part of Laos you are from but I posted a recipe for northern Lao khao soi. Its on the discussion board. I hope it helps.

              1. <BUMP>

                while the OP doesn't seem to be posting in a long while, i thought you all might be interested in a new laotian cookbook:

                4 Replies
                1. re: alkapal

                  Thanks, alkapal. I'm happy to see more Laotian cookbooks on the market.

                  1. re: yummyrice

                    we recently had a chowfeast of laotian food here in DC area. the dishes in general were very heavy on the "fermented" flavors, in my limited experience.

                    1. re: alkapal

                      I've spent a couple of weeks in Laos. I think the most important thing to understand about Laotian food is that it is usually meant to be eaten with one's hands. Balls of sticky rice are to Laotian cuisine what injera is to Ethiopian cuisine. This helps put in context many traditional Laotian dishes, such as shredded papaya salad (frequently served at Thai restaurants) and larb (diced fish, meat, or tofu in a spicy, tangy sauce). I think it's important to eat Laotian food with sticky rice, whether or not you eat it with your hands, because sticky rice is properly balanced with the light, simply prepared dishes that typify Laotian cuisine. Jasmine rice is a bit too heavy, and better supports heavier dishes like Thai curries.

                      Another thing that strikes me as important about Laotian food is that it's very heavy on fresh herbs. Cilantro is the most obvious, but I ate quite a few dishes with more exotic herbs I didn't recognize. I agree that fermented flavors are important to Laotian cuisine. Tanginess plays a major role in Laotian cuisine also. Finally, I think Laotian cuisine tends to be spicier than Thai cuisine. Dishes often contain chopped or crushed bird chilis uncooked.

                      1. re: sushigirlie

                        yes, we were impressed by the herbal complexities, especially. sticky rice was the rice served, too.