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Laotian Cuisine, Recipe name meanings?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hello there, I am a retired Chef who took to traveling the world in another career after catering college:-)

My question is about Laotian and Thai style foods and the meanings of the recipe names?.


To explain, Some time ago I ate Laotian foods and noted the names as I really liked the taste, sadly now I cannot locate recipes with the same names from Laos in books or on line but can find similar names but with different ingrediants from Thailand. As I know no one from these countries my self I am hoping a chef or viewer might be able to help please?


Recipes. Kua Pho Jae

              Kue See Ew

              Kua Kao


Any and all help appreciated re this question and recipes would be bril:-)







post #2 of 9

i currently live in Thailand. i'm far from an expert on Thai food, and effectively don't speak the language, i do know that Lao and Thai are similar enough that speakers of either can understand each other, so it's a fair bet that if you find a similar-sounding dish in Thai it may be the same. one caveat though: the languages are tonal. for example, "pet" with a falling tone means "spicy," but "pet" with a rising tone means "diamond".  also, The languages have more consonants. if you pronounce the pet (falling) like a normal P, it means "spicy," but with a bit of a b sound (bpet) it means "duck."


culturally and linguistically Laos and northeastern Thailand (called Isaan) are very, very similar, so Isaan food is more likely to have dishes that match those you found in Laos.


if you have specific dishes in mind, and can describe them a bit (or better yet, you have the name in Thai script) i can pass it on to a Thai for more information...

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hello there and many hanks for your very helpful reply, efforts greatly appreciated:-)  I have been in your part of the world a few times and spent lots of time there in the 1970s mainly. I sure miss the smells and culture:-)


I may be offline for a few days as I just got my main computer hacked and have to now use my laptop until its all sorted sadly..


If I get a chance I will seek photos of similar so you can perhaps show them to a Thai person, may make recognition easier hey?


Will try to catch up again asap, again much gratitude for your help


Cheers Jumper


post #4 of 9

My Intended is probably the best source as she's a bit of a foodie and makes the best Tom Kha Gai i've had. she's from the north (Prae, general vicinity of Chiang Mai) but we eat Isaan food fairly often. she's going to be away for 10 days on business, so no hurry!


if you find some photos the guys at the local Isaan restaurant may know if she doesn't. quite a few of her friends are foodies too.


one smell you likely don't miss is the pungent bouquet of the klongs (canals) of Bangkok! there's one next to my building. fortunately i'm on the 10th floor.

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hiya Zeusbheld


Well, sorry for the long delay, sadly the computer hijck was worst than imagined initially. Thankfully I had a mirror backup so have all data back but a little messed with I must admit..


Due to time constraints and trying to get this out to you I thought I would simply send a description of the dishes I am interested in, hope it helps? Sorry to admit I just cannot find the others as yet, hopefully they show up one day:-)


Any and all help greatly appreciated,


Cheers Jumper


Kua Pho Lao

Lao rice noodles stir-fried in a sweet and sour tamarind sauce with chicken, bean sprouts, egg, tofu, carrots, and green onions. Or with prawns


Kua See-Ew

Rice noodles stir-fried in a dark soy sauce with beef, chicken or pork, egg, cauliflower, gai-lan, and bean sprouts.

Kua Pho Jae

Stir-fried Lao rice noodles with broccoli, cauliflower, bean sprouts, egg, tofu, and gai-lan in a house-made tamarind sauce – served with fresh lime wedges and crushed peanuts.

Laotian Meal-1.JPG

post #6 of 9

I would say that Kua See-Ew is the same as the thai  "Pad Siew ".

I've seen it spelled in lot of different ways, so be a bit creative when googling the dish :)


It's about the only Thai dish I know that uses sweet soy (kecap manis) or something similar.


The last one looks like a "Larb" or "laap" dish, but I'm not sure


Hope this helps.....

Life is too short to drink bad wine


Life is too short to drink bad wine

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hiya Butsy and many thanks for the info supplied, most helpful:-)


I am sure you are riht on this but felt I needed other eyes to check before I waded into the unknown and unchartered hey:-)


As you said there are many names for the same looking dish, who knows what the real name is and if truly the same, however close enough for this kid:-)


All the best Jumper

post #8 of 9

sorry to take so long but so far i've not come up with anything terribly useful... but i agree that kua see ew is probably almost identical to pad see ew. sure sounds like it.


the last one looks (and reads) like a pad thai. there are a LOT of ways to do pad thai, it's a category more than a dish (as is somtam, try somtam with cucumbers instead of papaya, or maybe ripe mango).


i'm applying for a job in Laos so if that happens i might be able to find better answers. (i'd also be able to buy those excellent scrubbed organic arabica coffee beans at the minimart so it'd definitely have some advantages)...

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hiya Zeusbheld, many thanks for getting back to me and for thinking of my request.  All efforts greatly appreciated:-)


I have my fingers crossed for you to get the job in Laos and hope it brings you whatever your heart desires it to be mate:-)


When in the area if you do come across authentic recipes I would love to try any and all as its is now impracitacle for a disabled vet to get to such places oneself now:-)


You take care and enjoy that part of the world as I remember my time their through my senses like it was yesterday, I just wish I was more like I am today that I was when in those parts as a military dude:-) I am way more Buddah that Bugger today:-)


Cheers Jumper

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