Sunday, September 23, 2012

Chews Cambodia

After the history lessons at Choeung Ek Genocidal Center and Toul Sleng Genocide Museum, let's move on to something more cheerful: food!

We left Saigon at 8AM and arrived in Phnom Penh seven hours later. Seven hours sitting next to the toilet did not dampen my appetite. I was famished when we got to our destination. How did we find our first meal (aka lunch) in Cambodia? We left our grumbling stomachs at the mercy of our tuktuk driver. He brought us to Sinh Foo Restaurant (#323 Eo, Sisowath Quay) which served awfully good food (Mr Driver, sir, you are the greatest!). And, no, I don't think it was our hunger making everything so delicious.

Fried morning glory with garlic (left) and meat and veggie noodles (right photo by R Abastas)
Fish amok in coconut (left photo by H Bacordio) and red seafood curry (right photo by R Abastas)

All the dishes we ordered (US$2-$5), except for the noodles, came with rice. I will not describe each for I only have one word for them: delicious! Of the five (the fifth one was fried rice but we forgot to take a picture of it), the fish amok in coconut was the best. Morning glory is nothing but kangkong, but it was the best kangkong I've ever had thanks to its sauce and the generous amount of garlic.

Passion fruit smoothie and watermelon smoothie

The smoothies (US$2) were perfect for the hot Cambodia weather. I especially loved my passion fruit smoothie but my friend preferred the watermelon. To each his own.

At Sinh Foo you may dine at the ground floor or at the nth floor (I forgot which floor it was, all I can remember is that we climbed so many flights of stairs, thus making our stomachs grumble louder). At the nth floor, you have a nice little view of the river and the park.

On the thrifty side, we had a one-dollar-dinner from a food stall found on the corner of Streets 136 and 5, diagonally across Candy Bar. You can choose the viand from the food displayed on the cart. Along with your viand, the dollar-meal will come with rice, vegetables, and soup. Talk about bang for your buck.

The one dollar (US$) meal

Pressed for time on day two, we had our two remaining meals in Phnom Penh at the hostel (Velkommen Backpackers). The hostel's restaurant serves local (Khmer), Asian, and Western food. Breakfast was a BLT sandwich (US$2.50) for me and American breakfast (half or full, you pick) for my friends. The sandwich had a good deal of BLT (yay for that!) and just enough fries. Check out the half American breakfast below and imagine the full breakfast. I think a full breakfast would last me until dinner.

BLT sandwich for breakfast

American breakfast (this is "half"... full is two of everything)
Photo by H Bacordio

Lunch came and I was still quite full from the sandwich. But we were still seven hours from our next destination. Got myself the five spice chicken (US$5) and was surprised when it came out of the kitchen. It could feed three people (or two really hungry ones)! It was well worth its price. My friends got the fried rice and curry. Couldn't resist tasting something new, I had to take a spoonful of each. I have yet to find food that does not agree with my taste buds.

Five spice chicken

Fried rice and curry
Photo by H Bacordio

If you're ever in Phnom Penh and would like to find these places, I have a little map for you:

Did we ever get hungry in between meals? On the ferry, there were ladies selling fried insects. Crickets anyone? Cockroaches? Yes, I think I saw one selling cockroaches. That, I would never dare put in my mouth. Crickets, though, tasted like crispy spicy potato chips.

Snacks anyone?
Photo by H Bacordio

Look what's in my goodie bag

Phnom Penh in 24 hours:
Chews Cambodia (you're here!)
I Came, I Saw, I...Spent


  1. This entry made me hungry even if I just had my lunch. tsk tsk!
    You had crickets again. hahaha!

    Oh by the way, I love the new Mustachio banner. :D
    Depicts all the lingaws in life. *clap* *clap*

  2. GAAAHH!! you'd never get hungry there! It's unbelievable how super affordable and (i'm sure) tasty everything is there!!! I'd die of happiness if i was there. Now you're making this place one of the top on my travel wishlist. Have fun! Looking forward to more posts! :D

    Babe for Food - your BFF in Cebu dining! :)