Working through the Pok Pok Cookbook

The people behind the legendary Portland restaurant, Pok Pok — now with outposts in NYC — have put out a cookbook. Pok Pok: Food and Stories from the Streets, Homes, and Roadside Restaurants of Thailand is a beautiful book, with a lovely matte photographic cover, featuring the all important mortar and pestle. My little brother, not one to be scared off by complicated recipes outside his wheelhouse, suggested he bring his copy of Pok Pok up to Sacramento for a day of cooking and feasting. We started off the day with a trip to SF Market for the many many pantry items needed, swung by Huong Lan for sandwiches to hold us over until dinner. Back at the house we began a day of cooking, drinking Singha and Cremant de Bourgogne/Jura, while eating dried spicy squid and shrimp chips (yes, that’s what we ate in between the bahn mi and the dinnertime feast we were cooking). Here are some photos of the day:


The cookbook; a pot full of A-choy — a lettuce-y vegetable filling in for out-of-season water spinach in the recipe for Phak Buung Fai Daeng (stir-fried water spinach); a steamer basket for sticky rice


Dizzying array of pantry items

Dizzying array of pantry items needed to cook these recipes


Prepping for the pickled daikon and white carrots served with the chicken wings


Prepping for Kaeng Hung Leh (Burmese-style pork belly curry)


Prepping for the glass noodle salad with pork roll, shrimp, and tons of black pepper


Yam Wun Sen “Chao Wang” Fancy Glass Noodle Salad


Ike’s Vietnamese Fish-Sauce Wings (arguably the most popular item at Pok Pok)



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