Monday, December 12, 2005
Kanohm Jin at Aroonsom, Phuket
I was told that kanohm jin is a local dish from Phuket that one must try, so I was on the lookout for it from Day 1. Unfortunately, not too many street stalls seemed to have it, so I checked around and found out that there is a night area called Aroonsom on the north end of Rat-u-thit 200 Pee Road that should have it. So we hopped in a tuk tuk taxi and made the journey over.
Surely enough, one of the first places on the street that we hit said that they had kanohm jin. Interestingly, it didn't seem to be a very well-defined dish. The guy said they could do one with bee hoon or with ho fun noodles (and I think there can be a soup version too). So that being the case, it didn't seem like much more than just a stir-fried plate of noodles that one could get anywhere across Asia (and the decorative slices of carrots inside only reminded me of Chinese take-out back in the US). I was a bit bummed at this point, but we still went ahead and got the bee hoon version. It was available with seafood, vegetarian, chicken, pork, etc (in the proprietor's words, "all same price"), so we asked for beef with ours.
It turned out to be pretty darned good. It was extra tasty thanks to the grease (and I suspect that there was some egg involved?), and the squeeze of lime was also a nice touch. Even though it still seemed a bit like Chinese take-out, I could definitely eat this for a few days in a row (my mouth is watering from just writing this).
We also grabbed a bowl of tom yum soup, which they offered in just a plain "mushroom" version (i.e., none of those chicken slices nor shrimp to get in the way of your enjoyment). We asked for an extra spicy version, and indeed, it was loaded with extra heat, no doubt thanks to all the extra mouse dropping chilis sitting inside. It may not seem like much in the photo, but this was definitely one of the spiciest versions of tom yum soup that I've had.
Post-mortem note: I discovered later that what we ate was not really Kanohm Jin, at least, according to some text I found: "Kanohm Jin Phuket Noodles often compared to spaghetti usually served with a spicy curry sauce, the most common made from fish. It is usually eaten as a breakfast food and is, if you can stand its fiery character, delicious. It comes with an array of fresh vegetables and boiled eggs that are mixed with the dish by diners at their table." That was definitely not what we ate! I guess we got suckered in by this guy.
Digested at 10:44 PM
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