Monday, October 22, 2007

Cambodian Cuisine

After hunting for something exotic to eat during my last day in Cupertino, I finally found Chez Sovan. This family-run restaurant serves authentic Cambodian food. Cambodian food is similar to Thai but has unique flavors and taste. Initially we were a little unsure if this place will turn out to be a hole-in-the-wall, but the restaurant turned out to be a nice and airy one, with a very homely feel. The Sovan family seems to actually live in the section behind the restaurant, and we could see young kids playing and studying the room behind. Like I said, homely... :-)

Chez Sovan CupertinoIf there is one thing you should eat here, it has to be the catfish amok. Absolutely fabulous and unlike anything I have eaten before. This dish is a kind of fish loaf steamed in a banana leaf with curried lemongrass and coconut milk and served piping hot. I loved the taste, texture and flavors: catfish has never tasted this nice!

Chez Sovan CupertinoBefore the Amok we had started with Tom Yum soup which was sort of like the Thai version, but contained a lot of veggies, especially baby-corn. We also ordered the Samlaw Curry Moin, a chicken stew with carrots, potatoes, coconut milk and curry spices. This was good too, spicy but also a little sweet from the carrots.

And finally we ordered the Cha Me Kathang, flat rice noodles stir fried with mixed veggies and meat. Quite similar to the drunken noodles we ordered at Krungthai the other day. Again, milder in spice to the Thai version.

Great food, nice atmosphere, completely off the beaten path and great value for money! Portions were quite large and the prices modest. I know I am coming back for that Amok again.

Chez Sovan is located at 2425 S Bascom Ave., Campbell, CA 95008. Phone: 408.371.7711

8 comments:

Sank said...

I am quite envious my friend. You're in my old stomping grounds out there. I don't know if you ever get over to the East Bay but if you want to try one of the finest places to eat in teh world, try the Wente Brothers Winery Resturaunt in Livermore. The wine list alone is worth the trip.

Shantanu said...

@sank: Yup, and sampling everything I can find. Thanks for the tip!

foodette said...

Wow, that sounds so fantastic. I love that picture with the huge chunks of carrots - I can almost taste it through the screen!

Shantanu said...

@foodette: :-) Yes, it did taste as good as it looked.

Anonymous said...

This seems to be quite similar to "macher paturi" of Bengal :-) Did you get a chance to try this cuisine?I had a chance to taste it in a wedding...simply awesome! :D

-romi

Suzanna said...

I was in Cambodia 45 yrs back and i still fondly remember the chicken amok served INSIDE the green coconut shell. I can go back to Cambodia just for that! :-)

btw, a cool blog. what does it take to be featured in ur blogroll? ;-)

cheers,
Suzanna
http://bangalorebuzzz.blogspot.com

Suzanna said...

that (prev comment) should be read as 5 years back and not 45! I am not *that* old! ;-)
rgds,
-Su
http://bangalorebuzzz.blogspot.com

Shantanu said...

@suzanna: Hi, welcome to my blog! Hmm, chicken amok in a green coconut shell does sound pretty yum. :-)