I bought a package of Lao sausage from That Luang Kitchen a week ago and while it’s very good, it’s less spicy and less flavorful than the Lao sausage served at Vietian Café or Green Papaya Deli.
The TLK product is labeled “CURED PORK SAUSAGE, Laotian Brand” from L&B Foods, Inc. in Pawtucket, R.I. I haven’t eaten a meal at TLK yet and don’t know if they use the same sausage in their restaurant dishes. It’s thinner than the Vientian Café sausage which is made from scratch on premises.
Based on my limited experience with Lao sausage (one package from TLK, one meal at Green Papaya Deli and several servings of Vientian Café’s version) I prefer Green Papaya Deli’s over Vientian Café’s and Vientian Café’s over TLK. My first serving of Lao sausage was at Green Papaya Deli, and my memory of its awesomeness may be inflated by having one of those “Wow” moments the first time you taste something really good you didn’t know about before. I was at GPD to try the Mok Pa and just ordered the Lao sausage on a whim so the impression was even stronger for having been unexpected.
I’d be interested in hearing others’ impressions of different versions of Lao sausage and where to get them, and whether anyone knows if TLK serves the same packaged sausage in their restaurant dishes. We also got some Nam Khao to go from TLK and the sausage in it seemed consistent with the packaged stuff but it was in fairly small pieces so it’s hard to tell.
I've already seen the thread at http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/785717 and am interested in sausage available with restaurant meals as well as packaged sausage.
Here's a photo of the package of Lao sausage from TLK.
I hope yummyrice will notice this post and give us a translation of what I'm assuming (!) is the Lao characters that appear on the label - which type of sausage it is or is it a totally different one?
Ingredients are listed as: pork, lemon grass, dehydrated onion, scallions, salt, MSG, garlic, sugar, sodium erythorbate and sodium nitrite.
In any case, we're having them for dinner tonight!
I'm not on here as much, but better late than never. :)
So here's what the Lao writing on the package says...
*drum roll, please*
The Lao writing simply says "LAO SAUSAGE". lol
That isn't very descriptive, huh? hehe
ໃສ້ອົ່ວ = sausage / ("sai oua")
ລາວ = Lao
ໃສ້ອົ່ວລາວ = Lao sausage / "sai oua Lao"
In the Lao language, adjectives come after nouns.
The ones you bought appear to be regular Lao sausages. I don't believe sausage factories make the soured variety of Lao sausages, which isn't the same as Som Moo in case anyone is confused. Soured Lao sausages taste pretty much the same as regular Lao sausages, but with a sour element due to the fermentation process when cooked Lao sticky rice is added to the filling . However, it seems that sausage factories only offer Lao sausages sans fermentation so that the products will be shipped out faster. So if anyone would like to try the soured kind of Lao sausages, then you could try letting the regular frozen ones sit out for several days and hope that they will ferment, but then again there's supposed to be cooked Lao sticky rice as one of the ingredients in the sausage filling for fermentation to occur quickly, but I'm not a fermentation expert so please do not try fermenting the Lao sausages if you're not familiar with how the fermentation process works.
By the way, San Pablo Supermarket now sells frozen Lao sausages: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/785717
the provenance of the frozen L&B Lao sausage made me chuckle, because my very first taste of any version of one came at Champa Garden, and it reminded me of Louisiana style andouille or Portuguese-american/hawaiian longonisa. Pawtucket is in a region influenced by Portuguese and Cape Verde immigrants. have not tried it at the other Lao restaurants.