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Sunday, March 24, 2013

Siem Reap, Cambodia: Khmer Food Frenzy - Food Review

It's been a month that has passed since I did my Thailand-Cambodia backpacking escapade, and yet my hang-over with Cambodia is still within me. I'm just fascinated with their country's culture, tradition, and of course food tastes. I even tried searching for a Cambodian restaurant around Metro Manila to satisfy my taste bud's desires!

Khmer Foods
Khmer Food Choices

Besides knowing a country's culture and daily ways of living, another thing on my backpacker list is to taste as much local foods as possible and appreciate their diversity of flavors. I've tried a lot of foods in Cambodia and it's like a mix of Thai-Filipino-Indian tastes actually.

When going on a Angkor Historical Tour, never forget to drop-by Restaurant No. 21 and 22. It is located near Bayon Temple, passing through the South Gate of Angkor Thom.

Angkor Restaurant No 21 and 22
Angkor Restaurant No 21 and 22
Restaurants along Bayon South gate
Restaurants along Bayon South gate

First on my MUST-TRY list is the Cambodian Amok Chicken! Cambodia Amok is a Traditional Khmer dish either in Fish or Chicken, depends on your request, and mixed with onions, carrots, mushrooms, green leaves, coconut milk, and Khmer spices. The Amok costs USD 6 which is a very fair deal!

Cambodian Amok Chicken
Cambodian Amok Chicken
Amok Chicken in Coconut
Amok Chicken in Coconut

TRAVEL TIP: Most food menus indicate USD price so better bring USD currencies with you. However, if you had already changed your dollars to their local Rial currency (KHR), you can politely ask the waiters to convert the price to Rial. (Currency conversion: USD 1 = KHR 4,000).

Next must-try food is the Cambodian Lok Lak (others spell it as "Loc Lac"). Loklak is a made up of beef, tomato, and onion served with lemon pepper sauce. One serving costs USD 5.

Cambodian LokLak
Cambodian Lok Lak

Asian countries are known to have spicy dishes and Cambodia offers a lot of variety to choose from. Spicy Chicken in Lemon Grass which only costs USD 5 was very tasty and delicious. In the Philippines, we have this same dish but there's something unique about Cambodian dish which sets it apart.

Spicy Chicken in Lemon Grass Angkor
Spicy Chicken in Lemon Grass

Spending the night in Cambodia, never miss visiting the famous PUB STREET. There are a lot of local restaurants lined up the street offering both Cambodian Food and other Asian and Foreign dishes. I dropped by some of the restaurants and tasted what they can offer to foreigners.

Khmer Idea Restaurant Pub Street
Khmer Idea Restaurant
Cambodian Fish Amok - USD 4
Fresh Spring Rolls - USD 0.75
Prawn Tom Yam - USD 3.99
Angkor Draft Beer - USD 0.50

Khmer Idea Fresh Spring Roll
Khmer Idea Fresh Spring Roll
Prawn Tom Yum                                              Fish Amok  

TRAVEL TIP: Authentic Thai Tom Yum is more delicious and I prefer it rather than the Cambodian version. The price is almost the same so I would rather go to the original one.

Angkor Herb Restaurant_02

Angkor Herb Pub Street

Beef & Chicken Skewer - USD 1.90
Red Snapper Fish - USD 5
 Grilled Potato - USD 0.75
 Fried Rice - USD 0.50

The last thing on my backpacker list is of course, tasting every local beer in every country I go. In Cambodia, they have this "Angkor Beer" which cost USD 2 for every 640ml bottle. It's more bitter than the Thai Chang Beer, but it's equally tasty. Too bad, I easily got "drunk" with the Angkor Beer. :)

Angkor Draft Beer
Angkor Draft Beer

Along Pub Street, you may enjoy their Happy Hour Treat for Angkor Draft Beer which only costs USD 0.50 per glass!

More information about Cambodia from here:


  1. Hello! I am planning to visit Cambodia in December, then will try to cross over to BKK afterwards. Can you give me any tips on what is the most efficient means of travel--i.e. via chartered van, bus, or train, if any ? :)

    1. Hi!

      You may visit my other related travel links from here:

      Keep traveling!




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