Braised Duck Rice

My new Sukhumvit 101/1 neighbourhood is full of Chinese culinary gems, with khao naa phet, or duck rice, as one of my favourites. One particular restaurant, which has plump braised ducks hanging from steel rods at its front facade, always calls out to me whenever I walk by. A few weeks ago we finally walked in and gave it a try, and the meal turned out to be really delicious.

If you are an innards-eater—like me—you should opt for the stall’s signature dish: sai kaew, which means glass intestines. When the plates were served, we initially eyed the intestines with some suspicion; unlike the brown colouration commonly associated with braised intestines, the off-white appearance of these intestines looked rather unusual—and a bit off-putting. Nonetheless, we popped them into our mouth. They were slippery and chewy, with a bland taste that I’d associate with jellyfish. I think it’s a simply a matter of personal preference whether one takes to this dish (we didn’t).

But other parts of the meal are worth mentioning. The duck meat was soft and tender to the bite, and it slipped effortlessly off the bone. It’s best to drizzle the meat with some nam jim, a fiery green sauce served in a small dish. We also like the soup side dish, a rich brew with a subtle taste of herbs that we couldn’t stop savouring until the last drop. All parts of the duck are available, from the neck to the wings to the feet.

I’m usually not a fan of duck rice, but this experience has altered my perception. Now I can’t wait for my dad, a lover of duck meat, to come visit me so that we can check out this restaurant together.

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Filed under Bangkok, street food, Thailand

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