Tuesday, 11 September 2018

This week's recommendation - Larb Bplaa


 Eating Larb Bplaa whilst watching Jo make cocktails
This week's Thai dish was an easy one for Sibua (Sibby to her friends) and I to agree on. I have known Sibby since she was a young girl and now she is married with a child of her own. Whilst she was growing up she used to work with her mum (May) in a bar and restaurant known as Opium (unfortunately not here anymore). One day I went in there for dinner and could not decide what I wanted and Sibby chose Larb Bplaa for me.
Sibua, Head Chef at May's Kitchen
Now this was an interesting choice for me, firstly I love my Thai dishes spicy and Larb Bplaa (Salad Fish literal translation) is certainly that. Not a salad as you would see in England, a Larb is usually meat or fish ground with chillies, spring onions, mint, onions, maybe a few other vegetables and a spicy, but fruity sauce. Sibby's Laab is slightly different to the Traditional Isaan dish, as the white fish is battered and deep fried, which gives this dish a lovely crunchy texture.
Everything is cooked fresh and in front of you at May's Kitchen
From the first moment I tried Sibby's Larb I was hooked and I recommended it to so many people, who could not remember the name, that it became know as Mellisa's dish at Opium! Even the non-spice lovers love the taste of this dish, but needed a lot of rice and cucumber (traditionally used to take the kick of a spicy dish away) with it.
Crunchy battered White Fish, in a spicy and fruity sauce
If you are not a fish lover, and I was not until I tried this, this dish is also commonly served with chicken (Larb Gai), beef (Larb Nua - really delicious), pork (Larb Moo) and sold in most thai restaurants. Sticky rice is usually ordered as an accompaniment to this dish.

Sibby's Larb Bplaa now available at May's Kitchen
If you want to try Sibby's version, she now works as Head Chef at her mother's restaurant in Lanta, May's Kitchen.

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