Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Khum Khantoke ♥ ♥


“The most important thing is to try the local cuisine,” Uncle Richard tells me before our trip to Chiang Mai.

I. Totally. Agree.


khum khantokeKhum Khantoke is the newest and largest of all khantoke restaurants in Chiang Mai
(Actually, there’s only two)


khum khantokeFruit-carving and flower garland-making. I super love the girls’ headpieces.


khum khantokeReplica of a traditional teak house


khum khantokeThe young and adventurous sit cross-legged on open grounds


IMG_6523These triangle-backrest cushions are actually quite comfortable


khum khantokeThe not-so-young-and-adventurous sit on these tables with “wells” to extend their old and brittle legs and feet


IMG_6532YES, we are young and adventurous! Sam, Auntie Susan, and Moi.


A Khantoke is a round tray atop short wooden legs and is used as dining table by the Lanna people. (See photos above and below) Khantoke dinners have been a tradition in Northern Thailand for centuries and centuries, although according to our tour guide, only the rich and famous got to enjoy this kind of meal back in the days. (Thank you, Lord, for creating me late.)


khum khantoke mealA khantoke meal includes the following dishes (clockwise from top left): Crispy Pork Skin (chicharon is love), Deep Fried Chicken (rather ordinary), Pork Curry with Ginger Chiang Mai Style (beautiful flavor but meat is tough), Crispy Rice Noodle (sweet and sour crunchiness), Grilled Young Chili Paste with Ground Meat and Tomato Sauce (my favorite of all), Stir-Fried Mixed Vegetables, and at the center is Assorted Vegetables with Mild Chili and Tomato Dipping Sauce


khum khantoke mealThere’s also a basket of fried bananas for appetizer, and everyone gets a plate of
white rice, a bamboo basket of sticky rice and a bowl of clear vegetable soup.
Good news: Everything is refillable.


Midway through our meal, the cultural show begins.

IMG_6537Nice traditional costumes, but I don’t know about the long and sharp finger accessories…


IMG_6539I wish I had their gracefulness…


IMG_6541… Or a man who will perpetually hold an umbrella over my head


IMG_6542The first number is about two birds dancing together (or something like that)


IMG_6546Drum Dance to encourage warriors before a battle


IMG_6547Umbrella Dance


IMG_6554Hill Tribes Dance


It is very thoughtful of Khum Khantoke to make sure their foreign guests understand what’s going on, but repeating everything in 3 different languages before each number is such a draaaaaaaaaaaag. After the 5th or 6th performance, I stop taking pictures and start falling asleep.

Luckily, I am not the only one. 


IMG_6552Dessert: Rice Crackers, Watermelon, Pineapple
(Forgive the ghastly color. Blue lights = picture fail)


Khum Khantoke: 139 Moo 4 Nong Pakrung , Amphur Muang , Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Tel: +66 53 304121-3

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