Khao Soi in Chiang Mai

One of the main reasons I wanted to return to Chiang Mai on my most recent trip to Thailand was for khao soi. I’ve always thought this Northern Thai dish deserved more credit than it gets. In the U.S., every Thai restaurant has pad thai or satay skewers, yet few manage to offer khao soi, because it’s more regional and less understood. If you grew up in Central or Southern Thailand, chances are you didn’t have the dish growing up. I hope this changes moving forward. At its base is a bowl loaded with a coconut milk enriched curry, as well as two types of noodles – soft (typically made from wheat and boiled, inside the bowl) as well as a top-knot of crisp ones (on top). Add to that the garnish of tart, pickled mustard greens, fresh shallots and a squeeze of fresh lime, and you have one of the greatest Thai dishes, combining all of that sweet, salty, spicy, bitter and crunchy that are the hallmarks of the cuisine. Next time you’re eating Thai in the U.S., ask for khao soi; if you happen to be in Chiang Mai, go crazy. I visited a pair of places for brunch – hope you enjoy the video.

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