Here, you will find the ingredients used in my recipes, that you might not find in regular supermarkets, or in Asian specialty stores. Sometimes, you will need to mix things yourself, and/or make them in your own kitchen since not everything in Lao cooking can be found prepackaged or bottled.
You will also find here some of my favorite brands. As you know some things are not created equal…
How to Make ‘Khao Khua’ (ເຂົ້າຂົ້ວ) or Ground Roasted Rice. Follow the easy steps in the slide below.
All of the Lao traditional meat or seafood salads (ລາບ, ກ້ອຍ), such as ‘Laab Gai’ (ລາບໄກ່), ‘Goi Goong’ (ກ້ອຍກຸ້ງ), ‘Goi Pah’ (ກ້ອຍປາ), and some sauces, such as the dipping sauce for sour fruits, require ‘Khao Khua’ or ground roasted sticky rice to give it an undeniable fragrance and surprising crunch, a definite Lao touch. This ground roasted rice, an almost powdery texture, could be made in advance and saved in an airtight container to keep its aroma. I usually save mine in the freezer – don’t ask why but many aunts have sworn that it keeps longer and fresher that way ;).
- Put the dry, uncooked, sticky rice on a pan over low heat.
- Stir frequently so that it doesn’t burn.
- Roast over stove until it releases a nice aroma, turns dark brown, almost burnt.
- When cooled, grind it in a coffee grinder.
- Keep in an airtight container in the pantry.
This is found in the frozen section of your Asian grocery stores. Some are in long shreds, a little on the sweet side hence often used in dessert recipes. Some are almost ground (the one I use in Nam Khao rice balls) and usually soaked in hot water and squeeze out to obtain coconut cream for cooking.
I like to use this in Nam Khao because it gives out a subtle coconut scent after it is cooked. There are several brands: I don’t really have a preference. This one was the only option at the store that I went to. You can opt for either the powder or the grated option, or the combination of the two as I have in the recipe. The grated coconut adds some textural interest while the powder gives out sweet fragrance.