A museum, a market and music

To add another level of understanding about Khmer civilization, we visited the Angkor National Museum. Filled with treasures that were once part of the temples, there are examples of Buddhas in every position and out of every material. There are stone carvings depicting Hindu, Buddhist and Chinese myths and daily life. A model of Angkor Wat and explanations of the Khmer Kings histories are all impressive and informative.

The old market is a short tuk-tuk ride from the museum. There are stalls of souvenirs mixed with local street food and a daily market of fresh produce and protein. We saw turtles and snakehead fish and small river clams baking in the sun with chili and salt as well as freshly-picked pepper right off the trees. This led us to a Khmer cooking class.

Freshly picked pepper
River clams drying with chili sauce

We prepared a gourmet Khmer lunch which included a green mango salad with shrimp, sweet and sour soup with beef, fish amok in a banana leaf basket and sweet rice dumplings with palm sugar and sesame seeds for dessert. We sampled fresh herbs and vegetables from the market along with very local snakehead fish in the Fish Amok we made. Our chef had us use the traditional method of combining ingredients with a mortar and pestle. We quickly switched to the more modern blender. Our meal was plated with edible flowers and it tasted as good as it looked. A chef-kiss to Cambodia and it’s delicious cuisine.

Pestle Power

All that work in the kitchen (wink-wink) led to a couple of sensational massages before an evening Apsara dance show at Kanell. Apsara is a traditional Khmer art form. The dances have roots dating back to the Ninth Century. The choreography shares legends and also offer a special blessing to all who watch. It was a fascinating evening accompanied with drums, gongs, xylophones and local reed instruments.

One thought on “A museum, a market and music

  1. Wow, just wow!!!! That food is so beautiful (and I could just taste it!). Fried shallots! Yum!
    Thanks for sharing your trip with us! Safe travels! 💕


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