Kampot cold noodles

Kampot cold noodles

Luke Nguyen's Greater Mekong
Stuart Scott

Among the hustle and bustle of Kampot’s early-morning seafood market, I noticed a lady balancing two large, heavy baskets on both ends of a long bamboo yoke. She stopped in the live crab section and placed six tiny red stools in the sand, which were quickly sat on by hungry customers. When I went over to see what she was serving, she pointed and directed me to sit, then prepared a bowl of noodles within the minute. It was so simple, quick and light — vermicelli noodles, fresh mint, cucumber, bean sprouts, dried shrimp, fish sauce and peanuts, drizzled with thick coconut cream. It was divine.


Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons dried shrimp
100g vermicelli noodles
3 iceberg lettuce leaves, finely shredded
100g bean sprouts
1 lebanese cucumber, cut into thin batons
1 handful mixed mint, vietnamese mint and basil leaves
2 tablespoons roasted crushed unsalted peanuts

Sweet fish sauce dressing

Quantity Ingredient
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 small red chilli, chopped
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons fish sauce
125ml lime juice

Thickened coconut dressing

Quantity Ingredient
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/2 spring onion, finely sliced
125ml coconut cream
1/2 teaspoon corn†flour, mixed with 1 teaspoon water
1/2 teaspoon liquid palm sugar or shaved palm sugar


  1. To make the sweet fish sauce dressing, pound the garlic, chilli, sugar and a pinch of sea salt together using a large mortar and pestle. Add the fish sauce and lime juice, mix well and set€ aside.
  2. To make the thickened coconut dressing, heat the vegetable oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the spring onion and sauté for 30 seconds. Now add the coconut cream, corn† flour mixture, palm sugar and a pinch of sea salt. Stir for 30 seconds, until the mixture comes to the boil and thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and set €aside.
  3. Soak the dried shrimp in a little boiling water for 5€ minutes, then drain. Pound the shrimp using a mortar and pestle until it begins to break down. Set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, cook the noodles in a saucepan of boiling water for 2 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat and stand the noodles in the water for 5 minutes. Drain well, rinse under cold water, then drain well again.
  5. Divide the lettuce, bean sprouts, cucumber and herbs among four individual bowls. Top with the noodles, then the shrimp, then toss the salads separately.
  6. Now add 2 tablespoons of the sweet fish sauce dressing and 2 tablespoons of the thickened coconut dressing to each bowl. Garnish with the peanuts and serve.
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