Noodle soups are their own galaxy in Laos, where it's possible to eat a different kind of soup every day for a week without repeats. Here's a look at some of our favorites bowls!
'Laos' on Serious Eats
Every morning at sunrise, the alleys of Luang Prabang, Laos are filled with vendors selling local greens and tiny Laos eggplants, Mekong River fish, giant papaya, edible flowers, Buddhist temple offerings, and much more. By noon, the market has vanished.
With so many tourists coming to Luang Prabang these days, it was only a matter of time before pizza arrived on the scene. Today there are 3 pizzerias, but the only one that boasts its own wood-burning oven is Pizza SaSa.
The most popular appetizer (and perhaps the most impressive dish on the menu) is a dish called Miang Kum Som-oh ($5). Translations vary, but they all suggest basically the same meaning: "leaf-wrapped tidbits," "food wrapped in leaves," "many things eaten in one bite," etc.
I already knew I loved Thai and Lao salads. The dressing alone—a mix of lime, fish sauce, sugar, chile, and fresh herbs—does something spectacular to my brain, especially when it's really hot outside. But usually there's some kind of meat involved. So, how would the dish work with tofu and shiitakes? I never would have given it a shot had Nancie McDermott not recommended the combo in Food & Wine.