Cambodian Khmer Cuisine
First impression of Khmer cooking:
- Lots of herbs and spices. The best representation will be Amok.
Different restaurant has different presentation for Amok. I like the Amok with curry type of thick gravy and less herbs.
- sweet (not as salty or stronger flavour like Cantonese cuisine). Potatoes and pumpkins were the normal ingredient in many dishes.
Even the curry in general were sweeter than those in Malaysia.
I did not like the spring roll. Unlike the Vietnamese or Malaysian spring roll, the Khmer spring roll has potato as the main ingredient.
In Siem Reap town center, typical dish could be USD3 to USD4 (served with rice).
Amok, curry and salad were our favourite.
I preferred mango salad than banana flower salad.
Once you saw the condition of dried and smoked fish hanging in the wet market (with flies and dust), you might change your preference.
We also tried some local dish like the wild boar soup at Kulen Mountain. We did not like the taste as much as the Malaysian dry curry wild boar (咖喱山猪肉).
If you feel bored with the Khmer cuisine, Siem Reap has plenty of international cuisines to offer. From Thai, Vietnamese, western to Mexican.
Near the Pub Street area, we liked the following restaurants: Khmer Kitchen, Khmer Taste, Soup Dragon. Since it was tourist town, so the food was not very cheap. Typical meal cost USD5 per pax (including drink).
The draft beer was cheap (USD0.50). Bottled or can beer was same price or cheaper than soft drink. Fresh fruit juices or smoothies cost USD1.50.
There were many other pubs, restaurants and some have performing shows. Koulen II was a popular outlet (USD12 per pax for buffet and an hour stage show), but the quality of the food was just average.