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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Going, going, Saigon...

Our first order of business is to attempt to describe the unbelievable meal we just ate.  The 5-star Saigon Riverside Hotel cooks an unbelievable Peking duck in their Chinese style restaurant.  We know this because six of us devoured two whole ducks in one sitting.  The majority of the party were Peking duck virgins and had never experienced the delicacy.  For those of you who don't know - it is amazing.  The restaurant prepares the ducks all day, slowly roasting and basting the ducks in a dark glaze.  At some point in the process, the chefs blow air into the duck which causes the skin to separate from the body.  The skin then cooks independently into a sweet, crispy shell.  This is cut off of the body into pieces and wrapped in a pancake with scallions and Hoisin sauce.  Delicious.  Try it.  While we enjoyed the pancakes the duck is chopped up and stir fried.  We chose a garlic and ginger for one and bitter melon with black bean sauce for the other.  At the moment, we are seriously considering taking a trip to China for the Peking duck.  It would be worth it.  Did I mention the two delicious types of dim sum we started with?  You can never go wrong with shrimp and pork steamed in a dumpling with exquisite dipping sauces to match.

If you got through that without having to take a trip to the fridge you are privileged enough to hear about our upcoming travel plans.  Tomorrow at 8 in the morning we are piling into a rented car to the Vietnam city of Cao Duc.  We really have no knowledge of this small town other than it is on the Mekong and we will be taking a boat into Cambodia and up the river to Phnom Penh.  In Phnom Penh, we will be having a home cooked meal at Jed's wife Theary's house (Jed is our friend and the owner of the Warehouse Bar/restaurant in Siem Reap).  We're sure it won't be like our mother's home cooking but we know it will be good.  After a one night stay in the Cambodian capital we will be heading to the beach town of Kep which according to Google Images is unbelievably beautiful.  We are excited as our first attempt at a beach was a relative failure (See 'Saigon's Revere Beach' post below).  Don't go to Saigon Bay even if an apparently nice man by the name Nghii wants to take you there on the back of his motobike.  A couple of days to soak up the sun and salt water should do us good before we take the last leg of the journey to Siem Reap where we intend to stay for the majority of the remainder of the trip.  Once we get to Siem Reap the fun really begins.  Siem Reap literally is not prepared for us...

1 comment:

  1. I was only in China a week, and I never got around to eating Peking duck, even though I was in Beijing. I've regretted it every day since, oftentimes waking in a cold sweat wondering about what could have been.