In Kampot, treat bowls them over

Muy Kea arranges bowls of nom chann. Vandy muong
Muy Kea arranges bowls of nom chann. Vandy muong

In Kampot, treat bowls them over

Nom chann – a rice-flour dish that comes in both sweet and savoury varieties – is a favourite of Kampot residents but little known outside the river town.

The recipe was created by Kampot Market vendor Muy Kea, who began selling it 15 years ago.

“It is an original idea I experimented with that I made for my own family,” Kea said. “I thought other people might like it, too.”

The ingredients are simple: for the sweet version, rice flour, coconut water and palm sugar are mixed together, boiled and then allowed to set.

For the non-sweet-toothed, the palm sugar is replaced with fish sauce. Dried shrimp and chives are sprinkled on top.

Last weekend, at her market stall on a small square table cluttered with bowls, baggies and utensils, the tasty morsels waited in little white bowls. Meanwhile, hungry customers lined up ready to fork out the 25 cents for each serving.

Kea said that she can sell more than 200 bowls on a good day.

According to her, the sweet and savoury bowls were equally popular. But no matter which one a customer wanted, there remained a strict limit.

“Most people come for take-away,” Kea said. “But 10 bowls is the most they can order.”

Muy Kea’s nom chann stall can be found in the south end of the Kampot Market after 1pm every day. Tel: 093 545 184.

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