A little something different

Took a short walk at dinner time along the street that intersets with mine. It is a busy thoroughfare, especially at rush hours, and there is really nowhere to walk on the sides – so you just walk with your back to the traffic and hope for the best.

The street also is a beehive of retail and food stall/restaurant activity. There are massage parlors, ladies salons and barbers, drug stores, open air fruit stalls, motorcycle shops, a landscape nursery, t-shirt stalls, cosmetics – and food. This street is part of my daily walk workout.

I had noticed a Muslim woman selling some sort of chicken dishes at one of the rolling stalls and found her again. Forgot my Bahasa already but she helped me with nasi ayam (chicken and rice). She is from southern Thailand, which is mostly Muslim due to its proximity to neighboring Malaysia. Malaysia bahasa is very similar to Indonesia bahasa.

I haven’t had nasi aynam since I left Batam almost a year ago. Somewhat different here, served in a styrofoam box instead of brown paper, brown rice instead of white, and the sauce is different, but still spicy. One piece of chicken. 50 baht/$1.30

On my way back, I also stopped at a place with a glass display out front with a variety of, shall we say, interesting-looking food. There were some pork dishes, some chicken, some dried fish and a variety of what looked like vegetable dishes.

I opted for chicken that turned out to be cooked in slivers of some sort of cabbage and what looked like seaweed (very good but I left the seaweed); an attractive yellow cubed vegetable dish that turned out to include a lot of pickled ginger (you sushi fans know how hot that can be – I took a healthy taste and that was enough); and a third greenish dish that I first thought was green beans but most certainly was not (but good, whatever it was). 90 baht/$2.60

It’s probably good that I don’t know what is in some of these dishes.

I opted to have some of the brown rice nasi ayam for dinner and saved the rest for today’s lunch.

But before lunch, a walk to the fresh market was needed. The market is a maze but I’m finally getting my bearings so that I can find the same stalls each trip. You have to go to a certain area for the pork and beef (which I don’t buy), and the seafood is generally in the same area, probably because of the odor. Chicken vendors, however, mingle in with the vegetable and fruit vendors.

The $15 spent today would have been cheap if it was only on the meat (4 large chicken breasts, 21 chicken wing pieces, 5 center-cut pork steaks), but it also included a week’s supply of white potatoes, onions, tomatoes, garlic, cukes and lettuce. And two little gnarled-skinned green balls that I have no idea, but will be fun to look at, if not eat.

Anyway, I also like to pick up some street food while at the market. Lots of choices, so today I opted for some Thai sausage that I’ve never had (20 baht for 5-inch section). On the way back, I stopped for the first time at a stall I pass every day for their roti – a thin fried egg and flour bread that you can have various fillings added. I ordered one plain and one with banana (yum!). 15 and 20 baht

And once back home, here was my lunch:


Clockwise from the top: chicken and seaweed, pickled ginger surprise, green vegetable stuff, Thai sausage, fried chicken from the vendor who rolls by my place every night, and, center, Muslim brown rice.

About 2bagsandapack

Lifetime journalist, author, magazine editor and publisher, now semi-retired and traveling the world. My plan, after living in Costa Rica for 14 months, was to visit a new country in southern Europe every three months to experience the culture and the challenge of adapting to a new environment, while on a fixed income. That plan was sidetracked when I was offered a job in Indonesia, providing an opportunity to explore Asia. Indonesia lasted for a 4 wonderful years but I have now moved on to Hua Hin, Thailand.
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